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Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

                            CHAPTER 294-S.F.No. 3068 
                  An act relating to workers' compensation; correcting 
                  an appropriation error; modifying reporting 
                  requirements; eliminating certain reimbursement 
                  requirements; amending Minnesota Statutes 1996, 
                  sections 176.183, subdivision 2; 176.231, subdivisions 
                  2 and 7; and 176.305, subdivisions 1 and 2; Laws 1997, 
                  chapter 200, article 1, section 12, subdivision 5.  
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 176.183, 
        subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 2.  After a hearing on a petition for benefits and 
        prior to issuing an order against the special compensation fund 
        to pay compensation benefits to an employee, a compensation 
        judge shall first make findings regarding the insurance status 
        of the employer and its liability.  The special compensation 
        fund shall not be found liable in the absence of a finding of 
        liability against the employer.  Where the liable employer is 
        found after the hearing to be not insured or self-insured as 
        provided for in this chapter, the compensation judge shall 
        assess and order the employer to pay all compensation benefits 
        to which the employee is entitled, the amount for actual and 
        necessary disbursements expended by the special compensation 
        fund, and a penalty in the amount of 65 percent of all 
        compensation benefits ordered to be paid.  The award issued 
        against an employer after the hearing shall constitute a lien 
        for government services pursuant to section 514.67 on all 
        property of the employer and shall be subject to the provisions 
        of the revenue recapture act in chapter 270A.  The special 
        compensation fund may enforce the terms of that award in the 
        same manner as a district court judgment.  The commissioner of 
        labor and industry, in accordance with the terms of the order 
        awarding compensation, shall pay compensation to the employee or 
        the employee's dependent from the special compensation fund.  
        The commissioner of labor and industry shall certify to the 
        commissioner of finance and to the legislature annually the 
        total amount of compensation paid from the special compensation 
        fund under subdivision 1.  The commissioner of finance shall 
        upon proper certification reimburse the special compensation 
        fund from the general fund appropriation provided for this 
        purpose.  The amount reimbursed shall be limited to the 
        certified amount paid under this section or the appropriation 
        made for this purpose, whichever is the lesser amount.  
        Compensation paid under this section which is not reimbursed by 
        the general fund shall remain a liability of the special 
        compensation fund and shall be financed by the percentage 
        assessed under section 176.129. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 176.231, 
        subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 2.  [INITIAL REPORT, WRITTEN REPORT.] Where 
        subdivision 1 requires an injury to be reported within 48 hours, 
        the employer may make an initial report by telephone, telegraph, 
        or personal notice, and file a written report of the injury 
        within seven days from its occurrence or within such time as the 
        commissioner of labor and industry designates.  All written 
        reports of injuries required by subdivision 1 shall include the 
        date of injury, amounts of payments made, if any, and the date 
        of the first payment.  The reports shall be on a form designed 
        by the commissioner, with the original a clear copy suitable for 
        imaging to the commissioner, one copy to the insurer, and one 
        copy to the employee.  
           If an insurer or self-insurer repeatedly fails to pay 
        benefits within three days of the due date, pursuant to section 
        176.221, the insurer or self-insurer shall be ordered by the 
        commissioner to explain, in person, the failure to pay benefits 
        due in a reasonable time.  If prompt payments are not thereafter 
        made, the commissioner shall refer the insurer or self-insurer 
        to the commissioner of commerce for action pursuant to section 
        176.225, subdivision 4.  
           Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 176.231, 
        subdivision 7, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 7.  [MEDICAL REPORTS.] If requested by the division, 
        a compensation judge, the workers' compensation court of 
        appeals, or any member or employee thereof an employer, insurer, 
        or employee shall file with the commissioner the original or a 
        verified copy suitable for imaging of any medical report in 
        possession which bears upon the case and shall also file a 
        verified copy of the same report with the agency or individual 
        who made the request. 
           Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 176.305, 
        subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
           Subdivision 1.  [HEARINGS ON PETITIONS.] The petitioner 
        shall serve a copy of the petition on each adverse party 
        personally or by first class mail.  The original petition A 
        clear copy suitable for imaging shall then be filed with the 
        commissioner together with an appropriate affidavit of service.  
        When any petition has been filed with the workers' compensation 
        division, the commissioner shall, within ten days, refer the 
        matter presented by the petition for a settlement conference 
        under this section, for an administrative conference under 
        section 176.106, or for hearing to the office.  
           Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 176.305, 
        subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 2.  [COPY OF PETITION.] The commissioner shall 
        deliver the original petition and answer, after certification 
        for a hearing, to the office of administrative hearings for 
        assignment to a compensation judge. 
           Sec. 6.  Laws 1997, chapter 200, article 1, section 12, 
        subdivision 5, is amended to read: 
        Subd. 5.  Daedalus Project
        $2,500,000 $2,800,000 appropriated in 
        Laws 1995, chapter 224, section 12, 
        subdivision 2 Laws 1996, chapter 452, 
        section 8, from the workers' 
        compensation fund for the Daedalus 
        imaging project does not cancel on June 
        30, 1997, but is available until June 
        30, 1999. 
           Sec. 7.  [INSTRUCTION TO REVISOR.] 
           The revisor of statutes shall change the phrase "the 
        original" to "one clear copy suitable for imaging" in Minnesota 
        Rules, parts 5217.0800, subparts 1 and 2; 5218.0100, subpart 1, 
        item A; and 5220.2680, subparts 5 and 6. 
           The revisor of statutes shall change the phrase "The 
        original" to "One clean copy suitable for imaging of the" in 
        Minnesota Rules, part 5220.2690, subpart 3, item C. 
           Presented to the governor March 16, 1998 
           Signed by the governor March 18, 1998, 11:20 a.m.