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The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California on Monday submitted a special regulatory filing to the California Insurance Commissioner with proposals to address the COVID-19 pandemic effects on businesses and workers.
The ratings agency is proposing that claims arising directly from a diagnosis of COVID-19 with an accident date on or after Dec. 1, 2019, to be excluded from the experience rating calculations of individual employers and that payments made to employees who are continuing to be paid while not engaged in any work activities to be excluded from reportable payroll, according to a statement.
“Since the occurrence or non-occurrence of COVID-19 workers compensation claims incurred by an employer is unlikely to be a strong predictor of that employer’s future workers compensation claim costs, the inclusion of such claims in an experience modification calculation would not meet the intended goal of experience rating,” the agency said.
The payroll exclusion would apply while California’s statewide stay-at-home order is in place and for up to 30 days thereafter if the employee continues not to work, according to the announcement.
The agency is also proposing changes to the temporary reclassifications of workers to “clerical office employers” under California’s statewide stay-at-home order and that the change remain in place and for up to 60 days thereafter if the employee continues to meet the definition of an office worker, the announcement states.
More insurance and risk management news on the coronavirus crisis here.
A California state senator has introduced legislation to add some classifications of firefighters to those who may seek workers compensation benefits for work injuries related to post-traumatic stress disorder.