263-12-106  <<  263-12-115 >>   263-12-116

Procedures at hearings.

(1) Industrial appeals judge. All hearings shall be conducted by an industrial appeals judge who shall conduct the hearing in an orderly manner and rule on all procedural matters, objections and motions.
(2) Order of presentation of evidence.
(a) In any appeal under either the Industrial Insurance Act, the Worker and Community Right to Know Act, or the Crime Victims Compensation Act, the appealing party shall initially introduce all evidence in his or her case-in-chief except that in an appeal from an order of the department that alleges fraud or willful misrepresentation the department or self-insured employer shall initially introduce all evidence in its case-in-chief.
(b) In all appeals subject to the provisions of the Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act, the department shall initially introduce all evidence in its case-in-chief.
(c) After the party with the initial burden has presented his or her case-in-chief, the other parties may then introduce the evidence necessary to their cases-in-chief. In the event there is more than one other party, they may either present their cases-in-chief successively or may join in their presentation. Rebuttal evidence shall be received in the same order. Witnesses may be called out of turn in contravention of this rule only by agreement of all parties.
(3) Objections and motions to strike. Objections to the admission or exclusion of evidence shall be in short form, stating the legal grounds of objection relied upon. Extended argument or debate shall not be permitted.
(4) Rulings. The industrial appeals judge on objection or on his or her own motion shall exclude all irrelevant or unduly repetitious evidence and statements that are inadmissible pursuant to WAC 263-12-095(5). All rulings upon objections to the admissibility of evidence shall be made in accordance with rules of evidence applicable in the superior courts of this state.
(5) Interlocutory appeals to the board - Confidentiality of trade secrets. A direct appeal to the board shall be allowed as a matter of right from any ruling of an industrial appeals judge adverse to the employer concerning the confidentiality of trade secrets in appeals under the Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act.
(6) Interlocutory review by a chief industrial appeals judge.
(a) Except as provided in subsection (5) of this section interlocutory rulings of the industrial appeals judge are not subject to direct review by the board. A party to an appeal or a witness who has made a motion to quash a subpoena to appear at board related proceedings, may within five working days of receiving an adverse ruling from an industrial appeals judge request a review by a chief industrial appeals judge or his or her designee. Such request for review shall be in writing and shall be accompanied by an affidavit in support of the request and setting forth the grounds for the request, including the reasons for the necessity of an immediate review during the course of conference or hearing proceedings. Within ten working days of receipt of the written request, the chief industrial appeals judge, or designee, may decline to review the ruling based upon the written request and supporting affidavit; or, after such review as he or she deems appropriate, may either affirm or reverse the ruling, or refer the matter to the industrial appeals judge for further consideration.
(b) Failure to request review of an interlocutory ruling shall not constitute a waiver of the party's objection, nor shall an unfavorable response to the request preclude a party from subsequently renewing the objection whenever appropriate.
(c) No conference or hearing shall be interrupted for the purpose of filing a request for review of the industrial appeals judge's rulings; nor shall any scheduled proceedings be canceled pending a response to the request.
(7) Recessed hearings. Where, for good cause, all parties to an appeal are unable to present all their evidence at the time and place originally set for hearing, the industrial appeals judge may recess the hearing to the same or a different location so as to insure that all parties have reasonable opportunity to present their respective cases. No written "notice of hearing" shall be required as to any recessed hearing.
(8) Failure to present evidence when due. If any party is due to present certain evidence at a hearing or recessed hearing and, for any reason on its part, fails to appear and present such evidence, the industrial appeals judge may conclude the hearing and issue a proposed decision and order on the record, or recess or set over the proceedings for further hearing for the receipt of such evidence.
(9) Offers of proof in colloquy. When an objection to a question is sustained an offer of proof in question and answer form shall be permitted unless the question is clearly objectionable on any theory of the case.
(10) Telephone testimony. At hearings, the parties may present the testimony of witnesses by telephone if agreed to by all parties and approved by the industrial appeals judge. For good cause the industrial appeals judge may authorize telephone testimony over the objection of a party after weighing the following nonexclusive factors:
• The need to weigh a witness's demeanor or credibility.
• Difficulty in handling documents and exhibits.
• The number of parties participating in the hearing.
• Whether any of the testimony will need to be translated.
• Ability of the witness to travel.
• Feasibility of taking a perpetuation deposition.
• Availability of quality telecommunications equipment and service.
When telephone testimony is permitted, the industrial appeals judge presiding at the hearing will swear in the witness testifying by phone as if the witness appeared live at the hearing. For rules relating to telephone deposition testimony, see WAC 263-12-117.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 51.52.020. WSR 14-24-105, § 263-12-115, filed 12/2/14, effective 1/2/15; WSR 08-01-081, § 263-12-115, filed 12/17/07, effective 1/17/08; WSR 03-02-038, § 263-12-115, filed 12/24/02, effective 1/24/03; WSR 00-23-021, § 263-12-115, filed 11/7/00, effective 12/8/00; WSR 91-13-038, § 263-12-115, filed 6/14/91, effective 7/15/91; WSR 84-08-036 (Order 17), § 263-12-115, filed 3/30/84. Statutory Authority: RCW 51.41.060(4) and 51.52.020. WSR 83-01-001 (Order 12), § 263-12-115, filed 12/2/82. Statutory Authority: RCW 51.52.020. WSR 82-03-031 (Order 11), § 263-12-115, filed 1/18/82; Order 9, § 263-12-115, filed 8/8/75; Order 7, § 263-12-115, filed 4/4/75; Order 4, § 263-12-115, filed 6/9/72; General Order 3, Rule 7.5, filed 10/29/65; General Order 2, Rule 7.4, filed 6/12/63; General Order 1, Rule 5.10, filed 3/23/60. Formerly WAC 296-12-115.]
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