In re Compensation of Peery, 041919 ORWC, 17-02945

Docket Nº:WCB 17-02945
Case Date:April 19, 2019
71 Van Natta 413 (2019)
In the Matter of the Compensation of JAMES C. PEERY, Claimant
WCB No. 17-02945
Oregon Worker Compensation
April 19, 2019
          Unrepresented Claimant           Gress, Clark, Young, & Schoepper, Defense Attorneys           Reviewing Panel: Members Woodford and Lanning.           ORDER ON REVIEW          Claimant, pro se, requests review of Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Reichers’s order that: (1) found that claimant had not shown “extraordinary circumstances” for his failure to appear at the scheduled hearing; and (2) dismissed his hearing requests. On review, the issue is the propriety of the ALJ’s dismissal order.[1]          We adopt and affirm the ALJ’s order with the following supplementation.          Claimant did not appear at the scheduled August 20, 2018, hearing, and the ALJ dismissed his hearing requests. Thereafter, claimant sought reinstatement of his hearing requests, stating that he had erroneously believed the hearing was scheduled for August 24, 2018.          In response to claimant’s contention, the ALJ abated the dismissal order. After considering claimant’s position, the ALJ issued an Order on Reconsideration, reinstating the dismissal order. The ALJ reasoned that claimant’s scheduling error regarding the date of the hearing did not constitute “extraordinary circumstances” to justify postponement or continuance of the hearing.          On review, claimant renews his contention that he did not attend the scheduled hearing because he was mistaken about the date of that hearing.[2] Based on the following reasoning, we affirm the ALJ’s dismissal order.          [71 Van Natta 414] Under OAR 438-006-0071(2), when a party requesting a hearing fails to appear, the ALJ shall dismiss the request for hearing as abandoned unless “extraordinary circumstances” justify postponement or continuance of the hearing. A postponement requires a finding of “extraordinary circumstances” beyond the control of the requesting party. OAR 438-006-0081. We review the ALJ’s determination that the record did not establish “extraordinary circumstances” to...

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