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The Hierarchy of Rules within the Standard Classification System

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The Hierarchy of Rules within the Standard Classification System

January 29, 2014

The Insurance Commissioner's regulations pertaining to workers' compensation classification assignments are contained in the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan - 1995, at Part 3, Standard Classification System. The WCIRB often receives questions about how the regulations work together to establish classification assignments.

Section I, Introduction, states the objective of the classification system, and Section II, Classification Terminology, defines key terms and phrases. Section III, General Classification Procedures, contains the fundamental rules that create the basic structure of the Standard Classification System. The rules contained in Section III are the general procedures and are broadly applicable to classification determinations

Section IV, Special Industry Classification Procedures, contains rules that apply to specific industries. Special procedures are provided for each of the following industries: Aircraft Operations; Construction or Erection Work; Electronic Products Design and Manufacturing; Farms; Mining; Stores; Wrecking or Demolition and Building Raising or Moving, and; Labor Contractors. The special procedures contained in Section IV are each applicable only to the specified industry. For example, the special procedures for Construction or Erection Work apply only in connection with the construction and erection classifications listed in Appendix I, Construction and Erection Classifications. Further, the special procedures in Section IV will control over the more general procedures in Section III for the specified industries.

Section VII, Standard Classifications, contains an alphabetical listing of classifications that describe most occupations, employments, industries and businesses. The scope of each classification is defined by its phraseology and many classifications include footnotes. The classification phraseology and its corresponding classification code are in boldface type. Footnotes are in regular type and are located after the classification phraseology. Footnotes give directives regarding the application of the classification or indicate activities that are subject to separate classifications. The classification phraseology and footnote for each classification provide the most specific information regarding how each class is administered and will control over the more general procedures in Sections III and IV. 

New Classification Search Launched

The WCIRB's new Classification Search tool allows users to do a full text search across all standard classifications or by industry group. Users may enter keywords to see a list of all classification phraseologies that contain the keyword or that are commonly associated with the keyword. Advanced search features allow users to combine or exclude keywords or use wildcard search characters. Classification Search is located in the Learning Center section of the WCIRB website.