The process of an appeal for Full Panel Commission Review is as follows:
1. A simple letter noting why we are appealing must be filed with the Commisison within twenty days of the original Opinion.
2. A transcript of the hearing is requested and usually costs about $100.00;
3. The court gives us deadlines for filing written briefs.
4. The appealing party writes a brief, the other side then has ten (10) days to file write and file a response and the appealing party has five (5) days to file a final response.
5. After all briefs and responses are filed, all parties wait for the Full Commission to render its opinion. There is no formal deadline in which they need to adhere. Usually this process takes anywhere from six (6) to nine (9) months.
6. No new evidence is allowed. This means that after the record is closed, which usually happens at the initial hearing date, no new testimony or new medical reports can be entered into evidence. If a new eyewitness appears, we can’t use them. If the doctor writes a wonderful report in our favor after the closed period, we can’t use that either.
7. The appeal is about the legal requirements (for example: did we meet our burden of proof?) not whether we should have won.
8. The Full Commission usually sides with the prevailing party, especially in cases where credibility of witnesses or medical reports are concerned.
9. In addition to attorneys fees already awarded, the attorney fee awarded on appeal is usually and additional $1,000.00 plus costs.
10. The losing party to a Full Commission Panel Review has thirty (30) days to not an appeal to the Court of Appeals.