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Wisconsin Workers' Compensation Legal Library

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102.26 Fees and costs.

(1) No fees may be charged by the clerk of any circuit court for the performance of any service required by this chapter, except for the entry of judgments and certified transcripts of judgments. In proceedings to review an order or award, costs as between the parties shall be in the discretion of the court, but no costs may be taxed against the commission.

(2) Unless previously authorized by the department or the division, no fee may be charged or received for the enforcement or collection of any claim for compensation nor may any contract for that enforcement or collection be enforceable when that fee, inclusive of all taxable attorney fees paid or agreed to be paid for that enforcement or collection, exceeds 20 percent of the amount at which the claim is compromised or of the amount awarded, adjudged, or collected, except that in cases of admitted liability in which there is no dispute as to the amount of compensation due and in which no hearing or appeal is necessary, the fee charged may not exceed 10 percent, but not to exceed $250, of the amount at which the claim is compromised or of the amount awarded, adjudged, or collected. The limitation as to fees shall apply to the combined charges of attorneys, solicitors, representatives, and adjusters who knowingly combine their efforts toward the enforcement or collection of any compensation claim.

(a) Except as provided in par. (b) , compensation exceeding $100 in favor of any claimant shall be made payable to and delivered directly to the claimant in person.
1. Subject to sub. (2) , upon application of any interested party, the department or the division may fix the fee of the claimant's attorney or representative and provide in the award for that fee to be paid directly to the attorney or representative.
  1. At the request of the claimant medical expense, witness fees and other charges associated with the claim may be ordered paid out of the amount awarded.

  2. The claimant may request the insurer or self-insured employer to pay any compensation that is due the claimant by depositing the payment directly into an account maintained by the claimant at a financial institution. If the insurer or self-insured employer agrees to the request, the insurer or self-insured employer may deposit the payment by direct deposit, electronic funds transfer, or any other money transfer technique approved by the department or the division. The claimant may revoke a request under this subdivision at any time by providing appropriate written notice to the insurer or self-insured employer.

Payment according to the directions of the award shall protect the employer and the employer's insurer, or the uninsured employers fund if applicable, from any claim of attorney's lien.
Any attorney or other person who charges or receives any fee in violation of this section may be required to forfeit double the amount retained by the attorney or other person, which forfeiture shall be collected by the state in an action in debt upon complaint of the department or the division. Out of the sum recovered the court shall direct payment to the injured party of the amount of the overcharge.

History: 1971 c. 148 ; 1975 c. 147 s. 54 ; 1975 c. 199 ; 1977 c. 29 ; 1979 c. 278 ; 1985

a. 83 ; 1989 a. 64 ; 1993 a. 490 , 492 ; 1995 a. 224 ; 1999 a. 9 ; 2001 a. 37 ; 2007 a. 185 ; 2015 a. 55 . Cross-reference: See also s. DWD 80.43 , Wis. adm. code.

The only fee authorized to be paid to any clerk of court under sub. (1) is the fee under s. 814.61 (5), when applicable. 76 Atty. Gen. 148 .

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