§ 32–1520. Procedure in respect of claims.
(a) Subject to the provisions of § 32-1514, a claim for compensation may be filed with the Mayor in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Mayor at any time after the first 3 days of disability following any injury, or at any time after death, and the Mayor shall have full power and authority to hear and determine all questions in respect of any claim.
(b) Within 10 days after such claim is filed, the Mayor shall notify the employer and any other person (other than the claimant), whom the Mayor considers an interested party, that a claim has been filed. Such notice may be served personally upon the employer or other person, or sent to such employer or person by registered or certified mail.
(c) The Mayor shall make or cause to be made investigations of claims as he considers necessary, which may include processing the claim through a central system to give the Mayor an advisory opinion on the rate and degrees of disability. Upon application of any interested party the Mayor shall order a hearing within 90 days, unless the Mayor grants a special extension of time for the development of facts. The Mayor shall not use pre-hearing conferences to resolve workers’ compensation claims. If a hearing on the claim is ordered, the Mayor shall give the claimant and other interested parties at least 10 days notice of the hearing, served personally upon the claimant and other interested parties or sent to the claimant and other interested parties by registered or certified mail. No additional information shall be submitted by the claimant or other interested parties after the date of hearing, except under unusual circumstances as determined by the Mayor. Within 20 days after a hearing is held, the Mayor shall by order reject the claim or make an award in respect of the claim based on substantial evidence before him. The Mayor shall, by order, reject the claim or make an award in respect of the claim based upon substantial evidence before him, if no hearing is ordered within 20 days after notice is given as provided in subsection (b) of this section.
(d) At such hearing the claimant and the employer may each present evidence in respect of such claim and may be represented by any person authorized in writing for such purpose.
(e) The order rejecting the claim or making the award (referred to in this chapter as a compensation order) shall be filed with the Mayor, and a copy thereof shall be sent by registered or certified mail to the claimant and to the employer at the last known address of each.
(f) An injured employee claiming or entitled to compensation shall submit to such physical examination by a medical officer of the District of Columbia or by a duly qualified physician or panel of physicians designated or approved by the Mayor as the Mayor may require. The place or places shall be reasonably convenient for the employee. Proceedings shall be suspended and no compensation be payable for any period during which the employee may refuse to submit to examination.
(g) All medical reports submitted by the claimant or any other interested party shall become part of the record, except that the Mayor shall have the discretion to require the testimony at the hearing of any reporting physician. Copies of all medical reports submitted shall be supplied to any party upon request.