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Did Workers Comp Pay COVID-19 Claims? – Popular Holiday Question


Did Workers Comp Pay COVID-19 Claims – Holiday Question

One of the questions that many of my relatives and friends from the southwest ask me was to see how did Workers Comp pay COVID-19 claims?

Most of my relatives and friends never have been that concerned about Workers Comp.  They had questions this year on how many insurance carriers and self-insured decided to pay COVID-19 claims or deny them.  Their questions were a surprise to me as no one had been concerned about what Workers Comp covers for injured employees.

picture of workers comp pay COVID-19 claims
Public Use License – Maximilian Schönherr

Everyone had heard a story or two where the Workers Comp carriers issued denials for these claims.   My brother was a former Kansas State House Member.   The Kansas legislature was unsuccessful in passing a bill for the presumption to pay COVID-19 claims.

Many of my friends and relatives have public-facing jobs including teachers.  A few contracted the virus with a sustained influenza-like illness.  The worst illnesses came from the original strain of the virus.

My Answer To The Questions

I referred my family and friends to the NCCI COVID-19 pages.  I said that many states passed presumption bills that covered COVID-19 claims.

I reminded them that all states have an occupational disease statute that covers on-the-job illnesses. I pointed them to an article that I wrote earlier this year on this very subject last year.

Many relatives and friends were glad to hear that the occupational disease statutes were in place long before claim departments had to adjust and likely pay the claims.

Claim Departments Did Not Pay All Covid Claims In Certain Instances

I also reminded my friends/relatives that the claims were not rubber-stamped and paid when they received the first report of injury.  The one question that I left them with was – can someone working exclusively in a home office due to the pandemic contract a disease on-the-job?

At least Workers Comp came up in a conversation where everyone did not roll their eyes due to instant boredom.


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James J Moore - Workers Comp Expert

Raleigh, NC, United States

About The Author...

James founded a Workers’ Compensation consulting firm, J&L Risk Management Consultants, Inc. in 1996. J&L’s mission is to reduce our clients’ Workers Compensation premiums by using time-tested techniques. J&L’s claims, premium, reserve and Experience Mod reviews have saved employers over $9.8 million in earned premiums over the last three years. J&L has saved numerous companies from bankruptcy proceedings as a result of insurance overpayments.

James has over 27 years of experience in insurance claims, audit, and underwriting, specializing in Workers’ Compensation. He has supervised, and managed the administration of Workers’ Compensation claims, and underwriting in over 45 states. His professional experience includes being the Director of Risk Management for the North Carolina School Boards Association. He created a very successful Workers’ Compensation Injury Rehabilitation Unit for school personnel.

James’s educational background, which centered on computer technology, culminated in earning a Masters of Business Administration (MBA); an Associate in Claims designation (AIC); and an Associate in Risk Management designation (ARM). He is a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and a licensed financial advisor. The NC Department of Insurance has certified him as an insurance instructor. He also possesses a Bachelors’ Degree in Actuarial Science.

LexisNexis has twice recognized his blog as one of the Top 25 Blogs on Workers’ Compensation. J&L has been listed in AM Best’s Preferred Providers Directory for Insurance Experts – Workers Compensation for over eight years. He recently won the prestigious Baucom Shine Lifetime Achievement Award for his volunteer contributions to the area of risk management and safety. James was recently named as an instructor for the prestigious Insurance Academy.

James is on the Board of Directors and Treasurer of the North Carolina Mid-State Safety Council. He has published two manuals on Workers’ Compensation and three different claims processing manuals. He has also written and has been quoted in numerous articles on reducing Workers’ Compensation costs for public and private employers. James publishes a weekly newsletter with 7,000 readers.

He currently possess press credentials and am invited to various national Workers Compensation conferences as a reporter.

James’s articles or interviews on Workers’ Compensation have appeared in the following publications or websites:

  • Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS)
  • Entrepreneur Magazine
  • Bloomberg Business News
  • WorkCompCentral.com
  • Claims Magazine
  • Risk & Insurance Magazine
  • Insurance Journal
  • Workers Compensation.com
  • LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites
  • Various trade publications


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