COVID-19 has done a number on virtually every sector of the economy. Unfortunately, this damage has also expanded into workers’ compensation. While it would be ideal for this virus to leave those with injuries out of the economic hardships, that sadly isn’t the case.
Working during COVID-19 exposes employees to more risk than they likely agreed to at the outset of their job. Though frontline workers and retail staff have been society’s backbone during the past two years, that support hasn’t come without cost.
If you contracted COVID-19 due to your job or working conditions, your employer might owe you your due compensation.
If you contracted COVID-19 due to your job or working conditions, your employer might owe you your due compensation. That’s why many COVID-era workers are partnering with workers’ comp lawyers available through Schwartz Law Firm, a personal injury attorney firm in Metairie, to seek relief.
Here’s a closer look at how the pandemic affects workers’ compensation and what you can do to make sure you receive your claim.
How COVID-19 impacts the workers’ compensation market
Currently, COVID-19 is disrupting the workers’ compensation market, much as it has with almost every other market sector. Only those who are actively employed can file workers’ compensation claims. However, due to the retraction of the labor force between lockdowns and supply chain disruptions, COVID-19 reduced the number of total workers.
Because of this reduced labor force, the average number of claims for all sectors has lowered. This decrease means that there are fewer workers in the pool to contribute to insurance premiums and payouts.
With fewer workers in the labor force, the number of claims decreased for the first time in 2020. However, we’ve also yet to see the full impact of the COVID-19 claims data. So, it’s hard to know what amount or percentage the market retracted, but numbers are likely to be significant.
Despite all of this data, it’s believed that the workers’ compensation market will make it through the pandemic. Ongoing casualty lines, especially those unrelated to COVID, haven’t been overly affected by the pandemic. This relief should give the workers’ comp marketplace time to survive the pandemic and return to its original growth as industries return to normal.
The future of workers’ compensation
While there are concerns about how much longer COVID-19 will last or how current funds are being used, there’s reason to believe workers’ compensation casualty lines will continue to be paid. But, the future is less clear when it comes to new lines.
Last year, twenty states passed laws or executive orders that expanded workers’ compensation to include COVID-19 related injuries. It is not clear yet how this affects premiums in the overall marketplace, but only a minority of claims have been filed so far. It could be that these expanded definitions don’t change much in the workers’ comp world.
Signs point to both the good and bad directions of workers’ compensation casualty lines' overall price. Because this arena is changing so quickly, contacting a workers’ compensation or personal injury attorney in your area could be your best bet in navigating the new rules and requirements.
The more help you have on your side with your claim, the more likely you are to see your claim filed.