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102.33 Forms and records; public access.

(1) The department and the division shall print and furnish free to any employer or employee any blank forms that are necessary to facilitate efficient administration of this chapter. The department and the division shall keep any record books or records that are necessary for the proper and efficient administration of this chapter.

(2)
(a) Except as provided in pars. (b) and (c) , the records of the department, the division, and the commission, related to the administration of this chapter are subject to inspection and copying under s. 19.35 (1) .
(b)
Except as provided in this paragraph and par. (d) , a record maintained by the department, the division, or the commission that reveals the identity of an employee who claims worker's compensation benefits, the nature of the employee's claimed injury, the employee's past or present medical condition, the extent of the employee's disability, or the amount, type, or duration of benefits paid to the employee and a record maintained by the department that reveals any financial information provided to the department by a self-insured employer or by an applicant for exemption under

Updated 15-16 Wis. Stats.

s. 102.28 (2) (b) are confidential and not open to public inspection or copying under s. 19.35 (1) . The department, the division, or the commission may deny a request made under s. 19.35 (1) or, subject to s. 102.17 (2m) and (2s) , refuse to honor a subpoena issued by an attorney of record in a civil or criminal action or special proceeding to inspect and copy a record that is confidential under this paragraph, unless one of the following applies:

  1. The requester is the employee who is the subject of the record or an attorney or authorized agent of that employee. An attorney or authorized agent of an employee who is the subject of a record shall provide a written authorization for inspection and copying from the employee if requested by the department, the division, or the commission.

  2. The record that is requested contains confidential information concerning a worker's compensation claim and the requester is an insurance carrier or employer that is a party to any worker's compensation claim involving the same employee or an attorney or authorized agent of that insurance carrier or employer, except that the department, the division, or the commission is not required to do a random search of its records and may require the requester to provide the approximate date of the injury and any other relevant information that would assist the department, the division, or the commission in finding the record requested. An attorney or authorized agent of an insurance carrier or employer that is a party to an employee's worker's compensation claim shall provide a written authorization for inspection and copying from the insurance carrier or employer if requested by the department, the division, or the commission.

  3. The record that is requested contains financial information provided by a self-insured employer or by an applicant for exemption under s. 102.28 (2) (b) and the requester is the self-insured employer or applicant for exemption or an attorney or authorized agent of the self-insured employer or applicant for exemption. An attorney or authorized agent of the self-insured employer or of the applicant for exemption shall provide a written authorization for inspection and copying from the self-insured employer or applicant for exemption if requested by the department.

  4. A court of competent jurisdiction in this state orders the department, the division, or the commission to release the record.

  5. The requester is the department of children and families or a county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5) , the request is made under s. 49.22 (2m) , and the request is limited to the name and address of the employee who is the subject of the record, the name and address of the employee's employer, and any financial information about that employee contained in the record.

  6. The department of revenue requests the record for the purpose of locating a person, or the assets of a person, who has failed to file tax returns, who has underreported taxable income or who is a delinquent taxpayer; identifying fraudulent tax returns; or providing information for tax-related prosecutions.

(c)
A record maintained by the department, the division, or the commission that contains employer or insurer information obtained from the Wisconsin compensation rating bureau under
s.
102.31 (8) or 626.32 (1) (a) is confidential and not open to public inspection or copying under s. 19.35 (1) unless the Wisconsin compensation rating bureau authorizes public inspection or copying of that information.
(d) 1. In this paragraph:
a.
" Government unit" has the meaning given in s. 108.02 (17) and also includes a corresponding unit in the government of another state or a unit of the federal government.
b. " Institution of higher education" has the meaning given in
s.
108.02 (18) .
c.
" Nonprofit research organization" means an organization that is exempt from federal income tax under section 501 (a) of the Internal Revenue Code and whose mission is to engage in research.

2. The department, the division, or the commission may release information that is confidential under par. (b) to a government unit, an institution of higher education, or a nonprofit research organization for purposes of research and may release information that is confidential under par. (c) to those persons for that purpose if the Wisconsin compensation rating bureau authorizes that release. A government unit, institution of higher education, or nonprofit research organization may not permit inspection or disclosure of any information released to it under this subdivision that is confidential under par. (b) unless the department, the division, or the commission authorizes that inspection or disclosure and may not permit inspection or disclosure of any information released to it under this subdivision that is confidential under par. (c) unless the department, the division, or the commission, and the Wisconsin compensation rating bureau, authorize the inspection or disclosure. A government unit, institution of higher education, or nonprofit research organization that obtains any confidential information under this subdivision for purposes of research shall provide the results of that research free of charge to the person that released or authorized the release of that information.

History: 1975 c. 147 s. 54 ; 1989 a. 64 ; 1991 a. 85 ; 1995 a. 117 ; 1997 a. 191 , 237 ; 2001 a. 37 , 107 ; 2005 a. 172 ; 2009 a. 180 ; 2015 a. 55 .



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