California Workers compensation Insurance
In the State of California workers' compensation(Works Comp) insurance provides medical and disability coverage for the company employees in the event of a work related illness or injury. The employers' liability portion of most Workers' Compensation policies protects the company in the event that an employee files suit claiming that the company was negligent and is the cause of the work related illness or injury. Workers' Compensation insurance is required in the State of California.
Why would a company doing business in California purchase Workers' Compensation Insurance?
All California employers are required by law to carry Workers' Compensation coverage. Many companies here in California feel that their only source for Worker’s Compensation coverage is the state fund which is an unfortunate misunderstanding. There is incredible competition for your business in this state and you should know about all of your options.
Example of how California Workers' Compensation coverage can protect your business.
One of our manufacturing clients, who has great controls in place to protect their employees, had recently conducted a meeting which is part of their on going employee safety program. While lifting a container of finished products, an employee injured his back and was taken to the hospital. The company immediately notified us and began the process of managing the claim through the Arroyo Insurance Services Workers' Compensation. The claim was verified as valid and the employee entered in physical therapy and returned to work with in two weeks. Had the company not had the correct coverage and our claim’s management process in place, this accident could have cost the company to write a blank check.
Shortcuts to watch for in your California Workers' Compensation Policy
Often a broker will represent a savings in Workers' Compensation policy when in fact they have reclassified employees into job classifications that are incorrect. This may lower your premium for a short period, but if a claim occurs and the employees are not correctly classified, the claim can be denied and the company can be held liable. Your broker's knowledge of your business is crucial and is why I will always take the time to understand what each job description entails and how the employees do their jobs so my clients are not subject misclassification.
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What is an Experience Modification Number (Ex Mod)?
The Experienced modifier, experience modification or Ex Mod is a term used in the insurance industry to reflex the number used as a multiplier for workers' compensation insurance rates. It is the adjustment of manual rating based on previous loss experience; usually three years of loss experience are used to determine the experience modifier for a workers' compensation policy of carriers in California.
Experience modifications are figured using these losses, compared to the losses that are expected based on the business of the employer.
How do companies control Workers' Compensation claims?
At Arroyo Insurance Services we help our clients take a “holistic” approach to worker’s compensation claims. By understanding that you must look at the whole organization and help employees understand that they have options. By creating an environment where employees know that they will be taken care of in the event of a claim, employees will begin to act in more responsible manner.
One of the most effective ways to lower worker’s compensation claims in California is to provide a group health coverage option for all employees. How does this lower your workers' compensation claims? When and employee has healthcare coverage he has “24 hour coverage” meaning they are covered while on the job and while off the job. These employees have been statistically proven to file fewer workers' compensation claims and return to work in a shorter period of time.
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Controlling claims and getting your claims closed in a timely manner.
Obviously, the best way to control workers' compensation claims and costs for your California business is to avoid injury claims. This means that your California company needs to take the necessary steps in providing a safe work environment, provide effective safety training and use ongoing programs to promote workplace safety. It is also important that management play a daily role in ensuring that employees follow these safety guidelines to prevent and reduce workplace accidents.
Providing safety training and promoting awareness is much more than simply posting safety reminders in common areas of the workplace. Many California companies have found that holding workshops, safety seminars and offering safety incentive programs help to ensure that employees remain aware of their surroundings at the job site.
Additionally, it is important that you use up-to-date classification codes for your job positions. For instance, a common mistake made by California business owners is that they file all administrative staff under the code of office clerk. However, a file clerk has a much different job than a data entry clerk. The file clerk does not typically type all day like a data entry clerk, who is more susceptible to carpal tunnel injury. Using proper codes can ensure that your staff is properly recognized under your insurance policy and can prevent many inaccurate claims.
Finally, having an appropriate workers' compensation insurance policy will not only help you to control claims, but close your claims in a timely manner. When employees are coded properly under their job positions and you take the necessary steps to ensure safety at the workplace, your insurance provider will be able to more effectively help you should a workers' compensation claim be placed.
California Workers Compensation News:
Workers' Compensation Industry Sees Obesity-Related Claims Ahead
June 10, 2009
It's time to face facts: the U.S. is a nation of obese workers. About a quarter of the nation is obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While this presents serious health implications for those who are overweight, it also presents serious implications for the workers' compensation insurance industry. Read More...
California Provides Assistance to Injured Workers
June 1, 2009
The California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) and the Division of Workers' Compensation (DWC) have teamed up with the Watsonville, Calif.-based Workers' Compensation Enforcement Collaborative (WCEC) provide assistance to injured workers seeking benefits when their employers are illegally uninsured. The DWC's Information and Assistance (I&A) Unit in Salinas has been planning with WCEC members and others and today launched a "customer service initiative" pilot project designed to help these injured workers get benefits while shining a spotlight on their illegally uninsured employers.
Soaring medical insurance costs are a sore spot for employers
April 6, 2009
Reporting from Sacramento -- Soaring medical costs may drive up premiums paid by already beleaguered California employers for workers' compensation insurance -- after rates plunged 65% over the last six years. “Where do they think the extra 24% is going to come from?” said Roman Versch, a La Verne pet supplies retailer, of the proposed workers' compensation insurance premium hike. Insurers say rising premiums justify a 24.4% rate hike, but employers and the governor oppose it. Read More...
California Court: Workers' Comp Doesn't Bar Independent Contractor's Claim
December 29, 2008
Projected 2008 Net Premium is $1.7B
California State Compensation Insurance Fund: First Open Meeting Reveals Disturbing Ratios - In its first attempt at transparency since the passage of SB 1145, State Compensation Insurance Fund (SCIF) held its first open board meeting in San Francisco. Much of the discussion was much ado about nothing with the exception of its 3rd quarter financials which generated some pointed public comment. SCIF is California’s workers’ comp market of last resort. Read More...
California Workers' Compensation Premiums Down in 2008
December 16, 2008
The Workers' Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California has completed its report summarizing insurer loss and premium experience through Sept. 30, 2008. Read More...
California Court: Workers' Comp Doesn't Bar Independent Contractor's Claim
December 9, 2008
Workers' compensation does not bar a worker injured at a construction site from bringing a tort claim when the worker is an independent contractor, the California Court of Appeal has ruled. Read More...
Carriers that offer Workers' Compensation coverage in California Businesses: