Workers Comp COVID-19 Numbers – The System Does Not Work That Way
Many prognosticators and the press have all rushed to publish or make sense of any Workers Comp COVID-19 numbers including claim counts and rating information.
Unless I missed something over the last 30 years, the numbers are like a green banana. If you are patient and wait for the green banana to ripen, it becomes palatable.
The same can be said for the workers comp COVID-19 numbers. They seem to be a little green presently. I have sat through many webinars on COVID-19 numbers.
The conclusions were the same – we will have to wait and see akin to the banana ripening.
The Calendar Wins Every Time – September 1st/2nd Bellwether
Many articles appear on this website covering the timing of how claim values (Total Incurred) pegs to the Experience Modification Factor. For self-insureds, the calendar is even more delayed for claims valuation by a Loss Development Factor. (LDF).
Hang in there with me as this can be boring – but it can save your company premiums or self-insured over-budgeting. We will make many assumptions – the timing concept is the key.
The earliest claims value appears in any type of Workers Comp rating formula would occur on September 2nd, 2020. Watch the term earliest – it will become HUGE in a few sentences.
The UNIT STAT date becomes important – the day claims are reported to the rating bureaus. So, let us get started.
- Policy Date 03/02/2019 to 03/02/2020
- Unit STAT Date = 6 months after the policy expiration
- Small Assumption – 03/01/2020, the Workers Comp COVID-19 numbers were recognized by the Departments of Insurance and NCCI, WCIRB, and the other rating bureaus
- Bummer – you only have one day of COVID reporting numbers recognized by the rating bureaus – think a teeny-weeny tiny amount
- Big time bummer – the teeny tiny amount that could have been reported on only the 03/02/2020 claims would not even show up in your Mod until your 03/02/2021 policy (but only one day of claims possible – Egad!)
- Think green bananas (see above pic) as most of the COVID-19 numbers would be in your next policy 03/02/2022 – 03/02/2023 – wow that late? (Yes, that late)
1/365th of the Workers Comp COVID-19 Numbers
How much data will be available in 19 days? 1/365 and on 9/3 =2/365. Just move the numbers provided in the above list one day ahead. The effect of those numbers will not be starting until 3/2/2021.
Bottom Line – Watch the purveyors or prognosticators of information with such phrases as the numbers are here, etc. They are not unless you can get them from each employer or insurance carrier. Do not eat a green banana, well, unless they are plantains.
An honest opinion came this week from Dave Bellusci, EVP, and Chief Actuary at the WCIRB. When asked about the Workers Comp COVD-19 numbers with respect to rate setting, he said we do not really know right now. Thanks for your honesty, Dave.
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