Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 1033 13 I
E. Smith
  • Access to worker file, P. D. (issue in dispute) (experience rating) (retroactive adjustment)

The employer was appealing a decision of the Appeals Resolution Officer denying the employer retroactive adjustment of its CAD-7 experience rating account to reflect an increase in SIEF relief. In this decision, the Vice-Chair considered the employer's application for access to the worker's file.

The file generally consisted of medical documentation related to the worker's condition, as well as the VR file (containing information about how the worker's injury affected his functional abilities with respect to return to work) and two related claim files.
The claim file materials were relevant to the issue in dispute because they described the worker's injury and how it developed and affected his return to work. Entitlement to the retroactive experience rating adjustment depends centrally on the employer's diligence in pursuing SIEF relief in a timely way. The question of when and how the worker's symptoms manifested themselves over time was relevant to the issue. An LMR progress report, dealing with the worker's symptoms in the time period leading up to year in question in the appeal, was relevant to the employer's knowledge and awareness of the worker's symptoms and inter-related problems. The related claim files were also relevant, given that the SIEF relief was granted in relation to injuries resulting from the prior accidents.
Access to the worker's file was granted to the employer, except for a few pages containing personal information that was not related to the claim.