Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 1835 15 I
J. Smith - D. Thomson - M. Tzaferis
  • Referral to Board (stress, mental)

The worker appealed a decision of the Appeals Resolution Officer denying entitlement for traumatic mental stress.

Amendments to the WSIA repealed and replaced s. 13(4) and (5) regarding entitlement for mental stress, effective January 1, 2018. A further amendment added s. 13.1(8), providing that, if a worker has filed a claim for mental stress that is pending before the Tribunal on January 1, 2018, the Tribunal shall refer the claim back to the Board, for the Board to adjudicate in accordance with the new s. 13(4).
There is no indication of what is meant by a claim that is pending before the Tribunal. However, s. 13.1(7) states that a claim is pending before the Board on January 1, 2018, if the Board has not yet made a decision in respect of the claim by that day or if the Board has not yet made a final decision in respect of the claim by that day.
The date for the hearing in this case was December 12, 2017. The unrepresented worker advised that he had concerns about being able to prepare and proceed on December 12, given his emotional condition. He also wanted to introduce on new documents.
In the circumstances, the Panel found it unlikely that the hearing would be complete or a final decision released by January 1, 2018. Accordingly, the matter was referred back to the Board in accordance with s. 13.1(8).