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The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau said COVID-19 continues to account for a modest share of all California indemnity claims, and those filed in accident year 2021 were typically less severe than those from the prior accident year.
The WCIRB said in its updated study on COVID-19 claims that the severity difference in claims filed in 2020 and 2021 was partially due to a higher share of claims with incurred indemnity but no incurred medical loss. More than 40% of COVID-19 claims overall were for indemnity benefits with no medical provided, and most indemnity-only claims were small and closed quickly.
Average payments on an indemnity-only claim for COVID-19 totaled $2,398 in 2020 and $1,565 in 2021, WCIRB reported. Average payments on indemnity-only claims not involving COVID-19 were $8,426 in 2020 and $5,123 in 2021.
The bureau also reported that the 92,000 COVID-19 claims filed in 2022 already exceed the 81,000 claims filed in 2021 and could approach or even exceed the 119,000 claims filed in 2020.
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