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Workers compensation indemnity claim frequency in California continues to increase as most other states see a downward trend, according to the state’s Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau.
While indemnity claim frequency has declined nationwide since increasing “sharply” in 2010 in many states, it continues to rise in California, according to WCIRB’s updated “Analysis of Changes in Indemnity Claim Frequency” report, released Wednesday.
First published in 2012, the report was also updated in December 2013.
WCIRB data shows annual California indemnity claim frequency increases of 3.2% in 2012 and 3.9% in 2013, while preliminary data for the first nine months of 2014 suggests an increase of 0.9%. Out of every 1,000 workers in California, 16.3 filed an indemnity claim as of Sept. 30, 2014, the report states.
A number of factors are influencing claim frequency in California, such as increases in cumulative injury claims, increases in smaller noncumulative injury claims and increases in late-reported indemnity claims, according to the report.
Though the number of late-reported indemnity claims continues to increase, the report states that the percentage of medical-only claims reported after 18 months has remained stable since 2007.
California medical office visit fees have increased significantly after the state passed a workers comp reform bill in 2012, but changes in how medical providers are reimbursed for some billings may help moderate increases in total payments, according to the Workers Compensation Research Institute.