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California private self-insureds paid 25% more in indemnity claims and incurred more workers compensation losses in 2020 despite the pandemic-related recession, according to a report released Wednesday by the California Workers Compensation Institute.
The state’s private self-insured employers — who cover about 2.3 million workers — saw a slight uptick in total workers compensation claims, with 86,503 reported in 2020 compared with 85,852 in 2019, the CWCI said, based on data compiled by the California Office of Self-Insurance Plans.
While medical-only comp claims filed by workers of private self-insureds dropped 15% to 43,779 in 2020 compared with 2019, indemnity claims to 42,724 in 2020 from 34,307 in 2019 during the same time period. In terms of the overall frequency rate, indemnity claim frequency rose to 1.83 claims per 100 private self-insured employees — a 15-year high.
Paid losses by private self-insureds in 2020 totaled $268.4 million, a $15.6 million jump from the same figure in 2019, with temporary disability payments making up about 22% of the payments. For paid benefits plus reserves for future payments, private self-insureds paid out $742.4 million in 2020, up $48 million from 2019.
A professional liability underwriter for lawyers and law firms said Monday it is adding other insurer partners to enhance coverages for its insureds after having terminated its relationship with units of Skyward Specialty Insurance Group Inc.