Hearing Process

A hearing is a trial in the workers’ compensation arena. A hearing may occur in the workers’ compensation case when the parties are unable to resolve their differences through negotiation or mediation.

The Idaho Industrial Commission has a division that handles these disputed cases through the hearing process. An Idaho Industrial Commission hearing is a legal proceeding conducted before a Referee of the Industrial Commission or in some instances the entire Industrial Commission.

Generally, attorneys represent both parties, the injured worker and the employer/surety before the Industrial Commission at hearing. The rules of evidence generally apply, the Idaho Industrial Commission Judicial Rules of Practice and Procedure apply, and the Idaho Rules Of Civil Procedure apply unless an Idaho Industrial Commission rule supersedes them.

At hearing, evidence is presented to the Industrial Commission both in written form as evidentiary exhibits, oral testimony by both lay and expert witnesses, and often post-hearing medical depositions.  Witnesses are subject to cross-examination by the other side’s attorney.

After the hearing, the attorneys for each side submit written briefs (legal documents arguing their client’s case) to the Industrial Commission for consideration. 

This information is carefully evaluated by the Referee or the Idaho Industrial Commissioners and a written decision stating the factual basis for the decision is issued. A written order signed by the Idaho Industrial Commissioners resolves the dispute.   Decisions of the Idaho Industrial Commission are available online at www.iic.idaho.gov/decisions.decisions.html.