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Advisory 2000-03

Adoption of Amendments to Rule 129.5 and
Issuance of New TWCC-73 Work Status Report Form

Amended Rule 129.5: On June 20, 2000, the Texas Workers' Compensation Commission adopted a number of amendments to Rule 129.5 (relating to Work Status Reports). The changes in Rule 129.5 will be effective on July 16, 2000 and system participants are expected to comply with all aspects of the rule at that time (see below regarding form).

The key changes include:

Making the report due by the end of the second working day after the date of the examination;

Reducing the frequency the report is required to be filed;

Clarifying what information is required for a report to be considered complete; and

Providing reimbursement for a report required by the rule or provided in response to a request for an extra copy.

The specific changes and final version of the rule can be found on the Commission's website at Also available on the website is the preamble to the adoption of the amendments which includes summaries of comments received on the proposed rule and the Commission's responses which indicate whether the Commission agreed or disagreed with the responses and the reasons for those positions.

New TWCC-73: After significant input from system participants, the Commission has revised form TWCC-73: Work Status Report to improve its flexibility and usability. This is the form the Commission is designating for use by doctors filing Work Status Reports in compliance with Commission rules and a copy of it is attached to this advisory. A summary of the main changes to the form and some of the things that were not changed are available on the Commission's website as well as the TWCC-73 itself in various file formats.

The new TWCC-73 is a form that doctors will be required to use. Because many health care providers choose to integrate TWCC-forms into their databases for easier use, the Commission has chosen to provide a grace period before requiring use of this form. After February 1, 2001, doctors will be required to use the TWCC-73. In the meantime, doctors are required to file Work Status Reports that contain the information required in the rule, but are free to use their own forms.

However, in order to expedite the value of the Return to Work program, doctors are encouraged to transition to the new form quickly.

Signed this 29th day of June, 2000

Leonard W. Riley, Jr., Executive Director


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