Article 3. Collections of California Labor Code >> Division 4. >> Part 1. >> Chapter 11. >> Article 3.
The Asbestos Workers' Account shall take all reasonable and
appropriate action to insure that recovery is made by the account for
all moneys paid as compensation benefits and as costs.
In the event that the responsible employer is uninsured, the
account shall not be entitled to reimbursement from the Uninsured
No limitation of time provided by this division shall run
against the Asbestos Workers' Account to initiate proceedings before
the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board when the account has made any
payment of moneys, incurred any costs for services, or encumbered
any liability of the account.
Immediately following the receipt of knowledge of initiation
of proceedings before the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, or any
other jurisdiction providing benefits for the same injury, the
Asbestos Workers' Account shall file a lien and may invoke such other
remedies as are available to recover moneys expended for
In any hearing or proceeding, the Director of Industrial
Relations may use attorneys from within the department, or the
Attorney General, to represent the director and the state.
Once an agreement as to the responsible employer is reached,
or a decision is issued by the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board
and becomes final, the Asbestos Workers' Account shall notify the
responsible employer or insurance carrier of the amount of payment
necessary to satisfy the lien in full. Full payment of the lien shall
be made by the responsible employer or insurance carrier within 30
days of the issue of such notification. The account may grant a
reasonable extension of time for payment of the lien beyond 30 days.
This payment shall be for all moneys expended for compensation
benefits, and for all recoverable costs including the cost of
independent medical examination and all costs reasonably incidental
thereto, including, but not limited to, costs of transportation,
hospitalization, consultative evaluation, X-rays, laboratory tests,
and other diagnostic procedures. The payment shall bear interest, as
provided in Section 5800, from the date of the agreement or decision
through the date of payment.
The lien of the Asbestos Workers' Account shall be allowed as a
first lien against compensation, and shall have priority over all
other liens. The lien of the Asbestos Workers' Account may not be
reduced by the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board or by the parties
unless express written consent to the proposed reduction of the lien
is given by the Asbestos Workers' Account and is filed in the record
of proceedings before the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board.
Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to preclude the
filing by an asbestos worker of a claim or suit for damages or
indemnity against any person other than his or her employer. The
Asbestos Workers' Account shall be entitled to recover from, and
shall have a first lien against, any amount which is recoverable by
the injured employee pursuant to civil judgment or settlement in
relation to a claim for damages or indemnity for the effect of
exposure to asbestos, for all compensation benefits paid to the
injured employee by the Asbestos Workers' Account which have not
previously been recovered from the responsible employer or employers
by the Asbestos Workers' Account. Recovery by the Asbestos Workers'
Account pursuant to the provisions of this section shall not have the
effect of extinguishing or diminishing the liability of the
responsible employer or employers to the injured employee for
compensation payable under the provisions of this division.
The provisions of this chapter providing for the payment of
workers' compensation asbestos workers' benefits from the Asbestos
Workers' Account shall be operative only until January 1, 1989, and
as of that date all payments from the fund shall be terminated, and
the state shall have no further obligation to pay asbestos workers'
benefits, unless a later enacted statute which is chaptered before
January 1, 1989, deletes or extends that date. However, if no statute
is enacted to delete or extend that date prior to January 1, 1989,
the authority of the Asbestos Workers' Account under this chapter to
recover the benefits and costs paid to asbestos workers prior to that
date shall continue until the benefits and costs have been