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Claimant’s Due Process Right Not Violated if Commissioner is Absent from Hearing

Appeals from a staff hearing officer order or requests for reconsideration may be heard by the Industrial Commission.  In State ex rel. Evert v. Indus. Comm., 2015-Ohio-120, a hearing took place before the Commission on the claimant’s request for reconsideration, in which one of the three commissioners (Jodie Taylor) was absent.  A staff hearing officer, who attended the hearing, provided Ms. Taylor a complete summary of the evidence and testimony at the hearing.  Thereafter the Commission ruled against the claimant on her reconsideration request.  The claimant filed a mandamus action in the 10th District Court of Appeals on the ground she was deprived of her due process right because Ms. Taylor was not present at the hearing.  The court of appeals granted the writ of mandamus. However, on appeal, the Ohio Supreme Court determined the claimant’s right to due process was not violated.  Although Ms. Taylor was not physically present for the hearing, she sufficiently appraised herself of all the evidence.  Click here to read the court’s full decision.

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