48-177. Hearing; judge; place; dismissal; procedure; manner of conducting hearings.

(1) At the time a petition or motion is filed, one of the judges of the Nebraska Workers' Compensation Court shall be assigned to hear the cause. It shall be heard in the county in which the accident occurred, except as otherwise provided in section 25-412.02 and except that, upon the written stipulation of the parties, filed with the compensation court at least fourteen days before the date of hearing, the cause may be heard in any other county in the state.

(2) Any such cause may be dismissed without prejudice to a future action (a) by the plaintiff, if represented by legal counsel, before the final submission of the case to the compensation court or (b) by the compensation court upon a stipulation of the parties that a dispute between the parties no longer exists.

(3) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, all nonevidentiary hearings, and any evidentiary hearings approved by the compensation court and by stipulation of the parties, may be heard by the court telephonically or by videoconferencing or similar equipment at any location within the state as ordered by the court and in a manner that ensures the preservation of an accurate record. Hearings conducted in this manner shall be consistent with the public's access to the courts.

Source:Laws 1935, c. 57, §§ 13, 15, pp. 193, 195; C.S.Supp.,1941, §§ 48-174, 48-176; R.S.1943, § 48-177; Laws 1945, c. 113, § 8, p. 366; Laws 1949, c. 161, § 5, p. 413; Laws 1975, LB 97, § 8; Laws 1978, LB 649, § 8; Laws 1986, LB 811, § 109; Laws 1997, LB 128, § 6; Laws 2005, LB 13, § 29; Laws 2011, LB151, § 9.