Texas Dispute Resolution Officers Moved to OIEC on Sept. 1

As directed by the 80th Texas Legislature, changes in the administration of dispute resolution services for injured employees in the state’s workers’ compensation system were effective Sept. 1, 2007.

Twenty-five Dispute Resolution officer positions with the Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation (TDI-DWC) were transferred to the Office of Injured Employee Counsel (OIEC) on that date.

OIEC is a state agency that provides assistance to injured employees not represented by an attorney in the workers’ compensation system. The move allows OIEC to become involved in the dispute resolution process at an earlier stage in the dispute.

Before Sept. 1, TDI-DWC and OIEC assisted unrepresented injured employees in gathering and exchanging information relevant to a dispute. Now OIEC will be the primary state agency to assist these injured employees by offering ombudsman assistance free of charge during mediation and contested case hearings.

Source: Texas Department of Insurance, www.tdi.state.tx.us