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Several states have issued statements and created websites to help workers understand whether they may be eligible for workers compensation and disability payments if they are exposed to or contract COVID-19 in the workplace.
On Monday, Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Labor and Industry Jerry Oleksiak announced in a statement guidance for workers who believe they were exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace, advising them to notify employers to file a typical “disease-as-injury” workers compensation claim or an “occupational disease” comp claim and provide medical evidence.
In Michigan, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday signed an executive order to expand unemployment and workers compensation benefits to workers who contract or are exposed to the virus at the workplace.
California recently created a question and answer for employers and workers, which includes links on how medical professionals who are unable to work because of COVID-19 exposure or contraction can file a disability insurance claim. An executive order signed Thursday by Gov. Gavin Newsom temporarily waives the one-week waiting period for collecting disability insurance benefits.
New Jersey also created a Q&A to help workers, providing information on how they can apply for temporary disability insurance if they are quarantined and no longer have earned sick leave, as well as workers compensation if they contracted the virus in the workplace. New Jersey also stated on its site that people who have been ordered to quarantine because of COVID-19 exposure during the course of their work may be eligible for workers compensation, and that those who cannot go to the workplace because they are at a greater risk of contracting COVID-19 may be eligible for temporary disability insurance.
More insurance, workers compensation and risk management news on the coronavirus crisis here.
Workers compensation courts and offices throughout the U.S. have announced closures and changes to schedules and processes as the country grapples with the uncertainty surrounding coronavirus.