In 2013, the Oklahoma Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of a new Oklahoma workers’ compensation law that phased out the Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Court, replacing it with an administrative system, the Oklahoma Workers Compensation Commission (OWCC), effective February 2014.
The OWCC will handle workers’ compensation claims made by injured workers instead of the Workers’ Compensation Court.
The law also authorizes employers to opt out of the state’s workers’ compensation insurance provider as long as they provide equivalent coverage for injured workers.
Workers’ compensation is an insurance program that provides compensation for disability, and medical and rehabilitation benefits, for employees injured on the job.
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Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Posting
Oklahoma state law requires employers to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees, even if the employer only has one part-time employee. Employers with employees in Oklahoma must provide workers’ compensation coverage except where:
- Domestic or household employees where total payroll is less than $10,000 annually
- Agricultural or horticultural employees where total payroll is less than $100,000 annually
- Certain licensed real estate salespersons and brokers.
- Employees covered under federal laws
Changes to the Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Notice
Since 2014, employers must post the Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Notice posting (CC-Form-1A) that advises employees they are covered by the Workers’ Compensation Act (WCA) and that workers’ compensation counselor services are available at the OWCC.
The notice must be posted and maintained by the employer in one or more conspicuous places on the work premises. The state also provides the form in Spanish.
A claim for compensation must be filed with the OWCC within the time specified by law or be forever barred. Based on law effective May 28, 2019, a claim for compensation for any accidental injury or death must be filed with the OWCC within one year of the date of injury or, if the employee has received benefits under Title 85A for the injury, six months from the date of the last issuance of such benefits or death.
- A death claim must be filed within two years of the date of death
- A claim for compensation for occupational disease or illness must be filed within two years of the last injurious exposure
- A claim for compensation for cumulative trauma must be filed within one year of the date of injury