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Elia Hinks claimed that she sustained industrial injury to her head, back, shoulder, lower extremities and multiple body parts as a result of a specific injury and a continuous trauma. Two applications were filed accordingly. Lien claimant, MH Express Pharmacy filed a lien in the specific injury case only in 2004. The specific injury case was then dismissed without prejudice in 2006. The pharmacy claims it was never notified of the dismissal.

The pharmacy paid the lien activation fee in the dismissed specific injury case (ADJ2499103) on March 15, 2013, six days prior to the March 21,2013 lien conference. On March 21, 2013, the WCJ issued an Order Dismissing Lien Claim for Failure to Pay Lien Activation Fee with prejudice. The WCJ notes in her Report that there was no lien activation fee paid prior to the lien conference in the remaining continuous trauma case (ADJ3239580). The pharmacy lien claimant filed a petition for reconsideration of that Order.

Administrative Director (AD) Rule 10208, subdivision (a) provides that “Any lien filed pursuant to Labor Code section 4903(b) filed prior to January 1,2013, and any cost filed as a lien prior to January 1, 2013, shall be subject to a lien activation fee in the sum of one hundred dollars ($ 100.00), payable to the Division of Workers’ Compensation prior to filing a Declaration of Readiness to Proceed for a lien conference by that party, prior to appearing at a lien conference for a case, or on or before January 1, 2014, whichever occurs first. The $100 fee is payment for the activation of a lien. A lien activation fee is required for each lien filed prior to January 1, 2013, and for each cost filed as a lien prior to January 1, 2013; however, where one or more liens or one or more costs filed as lien is filed in one or more cases involving the same injured worker and same service or services by the same lien claimant, only one lien activation fee is required.”

As a result of this regulation, the WCAB granted reconsideration and ruled in the case of Hinks vs Pavlo Weinberg and Associates, that only one activation fee was required. The Order dismissing the lien claim was rescinded, and the case was returned to the trial level for further proceedings.