The WSIAT is committed to providing service to stakeholders during the COVID-19 pandemic and continues to adjust and update its processes in response to the evolving circumstances.
Limited and Gradual Resumption of In-Person Hearings
In line with the Province’s framework for reopening and steps taken by the courts and other adjudicative agencies, in-person hearings resumed at the WSIAT on a limited and gradual basis in September 2021.
The limited resumption of in-person hearings is focused on time-sensitive matters where an in-person hearing is appropriate and necessary, as outlined in detail in the WSIAT Guidelines for the Gradual Resumption of In-Person Hearings During COVID-19. During this time, the WSIAT continues to focus on alternative hearing methods (teleconference, videoconference, or in writing) to provide ongoing access to justice.
Effective September 2021, the audio for both teleconference and videoconference hearings gradually moved from the Ontario Public Service Audio Conferencing System over to Zoom. For more information on this process change, please see Best Practices: Zoom Teleconference and Videoconference Hearing Information for Representatives and Parties – Revised March 2, 2022.
Effective November 2021, the Tribunal started using Zoom Recording to record teleconference and videoconference hearings.
In addition to the WSIAT’s E-Filing service, the WSIAT is pleased to announce the launch of its secure file sharing platform called E-Share. This new e-service will enable the WSIAT to share case materials electronically to interested stakeholders by a secure email link. More details about E-Share will be provided in the future..
For case specific inquiries, parties can communicate with the WSIAT by E-File (available on our website at www.wsiat.on.ca), fax, mail or courier.
There are some adjustments to processes that remain in place. These include:
- Electronic signatures will be accepted unless there are concerns about the authenticity or reliability of the signature. In these circumstances, the WSIAT will follow-up with the party and/or representative to verify the signature.
- Affidavits that are remotely commissioned will be accepted as permitted under the Commissioners for Taking Affidavits Act. (Please note that affidavits are generally not required unless specifically requested by the WSIAT).
- It is not necessary for forms to be signed by both a party and the party’s representative – representatives may file a form without a party signature and the WSIAT will follow-up with the party at an appropriate time in the future.
Participants in teleconference and videoconference hearings are encouraged to complete the WSIAT’s surveys so we can continue to improve our processes during COVID-19.
Individuals can make general inquiries about the WSIAT’s operations by calling the WSIAT Call Centre at 416-314-8800 or 1-888-618-8846 (toll-free within Ontario) or sending an email to WSIATCallCentre@wst.gov.on.ca.
Additional resources regarding current WSIAT operations include:
- Tips for an Electronic WSIAT Hearing
- WSIAT Guidelines for Teleconference and Videoconference Hearing Expenses
Thank you for your ongoing co-operation.