We understand that operating a business in the state of California is difficult in normal times. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented us with completely abnormal circumstances. As a business owner, you probably have plenty of questions about whether or not you need to continue paying workers’ compensation if your employees are working from home or if you can stop paying premiums if you have furloughed your entire workforce. At Sacks Law Group, APC, we have tried to answer all these questions for you previously, and now we want to present you with some good news in the middle of a dark business period – your workers’ compensation premiums may actually decrease due to the coronavirus.
The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California released the 2020 State of the System report that shows just how much the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the job market, and therefore the workers’ compensation system, this year so far. The authors of the report admit that the full impact of the coronavirus on the job market in the state is not yet clear.
The report does show that the workers’ compensation charged rates per $100 of payroll fell from a peak of $2.97 in 2014 to $1.96 in 2019. The rate is expected to fall further to $1.81 in 2020. This represents a 50-year low in charged rates per $100 of payroll.
Not all of the decreases can be attributed to COVID-19, and California continues to have higher workers’ compensation rates when compared to other states. The report did take into account the approximately 30,000 claims arising from COVID-19-related cases allowed under Governor Gavin Newsom’s order to allow workers to receive compensation for most coronavirus cases that could be attributed to the workplace.
If your business is currently undergoing changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, please remember that workers’ compensation insurance is required in just about every situation of employment in this state. Even if you only have one employee or if you employ family members, you must provide your workers with appropriate workers’ comp benefits.
If you have slashed your workforce during this pandemic, it could be easy to forget to re-insure employees once you begin bringing them back or hiring new employees in the future. The last thing that any employer needs to worry about in this uncertain business environment in the state of California coming after them for unpaid workers’ comp.
If you have been accused of not providing employees with the appropriate workers’ compensation benefits, you need to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. At Sacks Law Group, APC, we understand that these charges can result in significant financial penalties as well as potential criminal charges. We don’t want that to happen to you. Our goal is to review the situation and work to reach a positive resolution for your case. When you need a Los Angeles workers compensation defense attorney, you can contact us for a consultation of your case by clicking here or calling 310-216-7778.