Maine Workers’ Compensation Update - November 2023
The following is an overview of developments with respect to proposed legislation as well as new procedures on independent contractor determinations, medical fee schedule updates, and the use of updated Board forms, including medical authorizations.
We are closely monitoring proposed legislation (“An Act to Index Workers' Compensation Benefits to the Rate of Inflation”) which would annually increase all weekly lost time benefits to account for inflation, at an amount tied to the Consumer Price Index. The proposed legislation provides for a proposed increase across all dates of injury with payments made under sections 212, 213, and 215 following a two-year waiting period. The impact of this proposed law is being studied, but is expected to be significant, at least under the proposed legislation as drafted. We will provide additional updates as they become available.
New Independent Contractor Forms and Procedures
As of October 25, 2023, an individual who wants to create a rebuttable presumption of independent contractor status will have to file a statement – Independent Contractor Statement(Form WCB-267) – with the Board. The Board will no longer review or approve Predetermination Applications. The Independent Contractor Statement will be effective when it is received by the Board. Information regarding who has filed a statement will be available on the Board’s public website.
As of October 25, 2023, use of the WCB-266, Application for Predetermination of Independent Contractor Status, has been discontinued and the Board will no longer process these forms.
Predetermination approvals granted through the close of business on October 24, 2023, will remain in effect until their assigned expiration dates.
You do not need to file an Independent Contractor Statement until your current predetermination is due to expire. The Independent Contractor Statement may be filed electronically here, which is the preferred method. The Statement may also be filed by paper, using the instructions here, and updated weekly. Questions about this process can be emailed to [email protected], or you may call the Workers’ Compensation Board at (207) 287-3751.
Medical Fee Schedule Update – Effective 10/1/2023
In accordance with 39-A M.R.S.A. Section 209-A, the IP Facility Fee Schedule/Appendix III has been updated for dates of discharge on or after 10-1-2023 (Excel file).
Workers’ Compensation Board Form Updates
WCB-206 Updated: Form WCB-206 Employee Expense Form has been updated to reflect the new mileage reimbursement rate of .46 per mile.
The Workers’ Compensation Board has updated the following forms to reflect gender-neutral pronouns.
- Form WCB-2A – Schedule of Dependents
- Form WCB-140 – Petition for Award
- Form WCB-170 – Petition for Restoration
- Form WCB-171 – Petition for Reinstatement
- Form WCB 320 – App for Rehab Services
In accordance with the changes to Chapter 5 of the Board’s Rules, the WCB-220 forms (medical authorizations) have been revised and are posted for use.
- WCB-220 – Limited Release of Medical/Health Care Information
- WCB-220-A – Limited Release of Medical/Health Care Information Related to Psychological Matters
- WCB-220-B – Limited Release of Medical/Health Care Information Related to Substance Abuse
- WCB-220-C – Limited Release of Medical/Health Care Information Related to HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases
- WCB-220-R – Revocation of Limited Release of Medical/Health Care Information
Forms are available on the Board’s website here.