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On March 18, 2020, the Appeals Board issued its decision In Re: COVID-19 State of Emergency En Banc (Misc. No. 260) in response to the March 4, 2020 declaration of a state of emergency issued by the State of California’s Governor, Gavin Newsom,3 and pursuant to WCAB Rule 10370. (Cal. Code Regs., tit. 8, § 10370.)

The Appeals Board temporarily suspended specific WCAB Rules of Practice and Procedure in its decision including WCAB Rules 10961(a), 10962(c), 10990(f)(3)(E), and 10995(c)(3). (Cal. Code Regs., tit. 8, former §§ 10860, 10865, 10866, now §§ 10961(a), 10962(c), 10990(f)(3)(E), 10995(c)(3) (eff. Jan. 1, 2020).)

Pursuant to this suspension, workers’ compensation judges (WCJs) and arbitrators were provided with an unlimited extension of time within which to issue reports in response to petitions for reconsideration, removal or disqualification.

As of September 1, 2020, the Appeals Board in its new July 16, 2020 In Re: COVID-19 State of Emergency En Banc (Misc. No. 264) decision, rescinds its prior suspension of the following WCAB Rules:

10961(a) Actions by Workers’ Compensation Judge After Petition for Reconsideration is Filed.,
10962(c) Report of Workers’ Compensation Judge.,
10990(f)(3)(E) Reconsideration of Arbitration Decisions Made Pursuant to Labor Code Sections 3201.5 and 3201.7.and
10995(c)(3) Reconsideration of Arbitrator’s Decisions or Awards Made Pursuant to the Mandatory or Voluntary Arbitration Provisions of Labor Code Sections 5270 Through 5275.

These Rules will become effective again with respect to petitions filed on or after September 1, 2020.

Suspension of the other Rules as outlined in the March 18, 2020 en banc decision remains in effect until further notice.