20 CFR § 701.401 - Coverage under state compensation programs.
(a) Exclusions from the definition of “employee” under § 701.301(a)(12), and the employees of small vessel facilities otherwise covered which are exempted from coverage under § 702.171, are dependent upon coverage under a state workers' compensation program. For these purposes, a worker or dependent must first claim compensation under the appropriate state program and receive a final decision on the merits of the claim, denying coverage, before any claim may be filed under this Act.
(b) The intent of the Act is that state law will apply to those categories of employees if it otherwise would. Accordingly, not withstanding any contrary state law, claims by any of the categories of workers excluded under § 701.301 or 702.171 must be made to and processed by the state and a merit decision denying coverage on jurisdictional grounds must be made before coverage or benefits under the Act may be sought.
(c) The time for filing notice and claim under the Act (see subpart B of part 702) does not begin to run for purposes of claims by those workers or dependents described in § 701.301(a)(12) and § 702.171, until a final adverse decision denying coverage under a state compensation act is received.