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10/8 - A Brief Summary of California Workers' Compensation News

Today's post will briefly examine workers' compensation defense news from around the state.

The amendments to the basic workers' compensation notice materials, authorized by state officials this past summer, are officially due today. (Basic workers' compensation notice materials are used to notify employees of both their rights and responsibilities under state law.)

Specifically, the following measures must have been implemented by both insured and self-insured employers:

• Employers must have provided all injured workers with an updated version of Division of Workers' Compensation (DWC)-1/Notice of Potential Eligibility
• Employers must have posted new medical provider network (MPN) notices (if the organization utilizes one)
• Employers must have posted amended workers' compensation employee posting notices

In addition,

• Employers must now provide all new employees (hired on or after October 8) with an updated version of the workers' compensation new hire pamphlet

Some of the more notable amendments to the workers' compensation notice materials include removing references to vocational rehabilitation, revising references to state web sites and mandating additional MPN-related information.

Any insured or self-insured employer that has failed to implement these amendments could potentially face the following consequences:

• Fines of up to $7000 for every violation of the new posting requirements
• Loss of medical control
• Tolling of the statute of limitations for filing claims
California state law enabled private employers to publish and utilize their own notice materials so long as they were approved in advance by the DWC. However, many of private employers simply relied on the California Workers' Compensation Institute (CWCI) to create the most current notice materials for them.

Stay tuned for further other developments in the area of workers' compensation defense ...

This post was provided for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

Related Resources:
• California Workers' Compensation Institute Assists with Posting Requirements (Insurance Journal)

1 Comment

In regard to the first bullet in the above article, " Employers must have provided ALL injured workers with an updated version of Division of Workers' Compensation (DWC)-1/Notice of Potential Eligibility," I see nothing in the revised regs that requires that the updated claim form/NOPE be provided to any injured worker other than those injured on or after the October 8 effective date.

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