CA Workers Comp Judicial System = Paperless
Will California’s Workers Comp judicial system go paperless? Is the update/upgrade going to be the funds and time invested?
One of the goals of many Workers Comp carriers and TPA’s is to be totally paperless. Being totally paperless may not solve as many problems as expected. However, being paperless represents a “fashionable update” to any department. The upgrade usually hits many snags along the way.
When I started as an adjuster many years ago, the carrier that I was working for had been using microfiche and a very rudimentary system to handle Workers Comp claims. It was actually a true paperless system.
However, the adjusters of today will print off what they need to review instead of reading it on a screen.
If all goes according to plan, by the end of this year the paperwork for disputed claims by injured workers will be missing an important ingredient — paper.
This month California began testing a controversial new paperless system for handling disputed workers’ compensation claims, and officials hope to completely switch over on Nov. 10. The shift, planned for four years, will affect tens of thousands of people, both inside and outside of the state Division of Workers’ Compensation and the state Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board.
Although program officials say the digital system will be faster and easier, critics contend it has significant problems that could make maneuvering through the already-complex workers’ comp system more cumbersome.
Launching the Electronic Adjudication Management System, or EAMS, will mean a fundamental shift for 1,160 state employees, 140,000 to 150,000 injured workers each year, about 7,000 workers’ comp attorneys plus their staffs, and numerous insurance companies and self-insured employers.
I hope this system works. I think there will be a huge amount of printing at the beginning of the process if it survives.