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House Bill 81 Brings Changes to Ohio’s Workers’ Compensation Law

Richard L. Johnson and C. Awele Nwajei
6/25/20

Ohio Statehouse   On February 19, 2019, House Bill 81 was introduced in the Ohio House of Representatives.  After unanimously passing the House, the bill was introduced in the Ohio Senate where, after amendments, the bill also unanimously passed and was sent to Governor Mike Dewine who signed it on June 16, 2020.  The bill will become law 91 days after it is filed with the Secretary of State, which will be on or about September 15, 2020.  House Bill 81 makes several significant changes to Ohio’s workers’ compensation law. These include:

   Different sections of House Bill 81 will apply to claims with different dates of injury.  The VSSR provision will apply to claims with dates of injury on and after the effective date of the new law (on or about September 15, 2020).  The voluntary abandonment provision and the provision to limit an employer’s right to contest a state-fund settlement will apply to claims pending on, with dates of injury on and before, and claims with dates of injury after the effective date of the new law.   The provision that has the potential to shorten the life of a claim will apply to claims with dates of injury on and after July 1, 2020.  House Bill 81 is silent as to the effective date of the provision expanding payment for post-exposure medical diagnostic services, so presumably the provision will apply to claims with dates of injury on and after the effective date of the new law. 

   If you have any questions regarding House Bill 81 or any other workers’ compensation issue, please contact Mr. Johnson or Ms. Nwajei.  

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   Disclaimer: This alert has been prepared by Eastman & Smith Ltd. for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. This information is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney/client relationship.