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The WCIRB publishes two e-newsletters that focus on common questions and issues related to workers' compensation insurance:

  • WCIRB News and Notes - a bi-weekly e-newsletter sent to subscribers every other Wednesday that features timely answers to the workers' compensation questions that are being asked by insurers, agents and brokers, and others. 
  • Classification and Test Audit Insight - a bi-weekly e-newsletter sent to subscribers every other Wednesday that highlights common classification and test audit issues of interest to auditors, underwriters and others. 

You can browse through the list below to view an edition for each e-newsletter or filter the list by e-newsletter type or topic. These e-newsletters are also searchable through the WCIRB.com Search feature at the top right corner of this page. If you have a question that you would like answered in a future edition, please email your suggestion to [email protected]

WCIRB E-newsletters are developed by the WCIRB for informational purposes only. The WCIRB shall not be liable for any damages of any kind, whether direct, indirect, incidental, punitive or consequential, arising from the use, inability to use, or reliance upon information provided herein.

The WCIRB frequently receives questions regarding the classification of stores that sell gasoline or gasoline stations that include store operations. The classification procedures for this combination of operations are provided in the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan —1995 (USRP) at Part 3, Section IV, Special Industry Classification Procedures, Rule 6h. This rule states: Read More >
Following the Insurance Commissioner’s Decision on the WCIRB’s January 1, 2018 Regulatory Filing, the WCIRB is busy issuing 2018 experience modifications (X-Mods). Here are ways that agents, brokers and insurers can stay informed on the status of an experience modification through WCIRB Connect: Read More >
This edition reviews the significant distinctions between four of these automotive classifications that have some overlapping operations: 8389, Automobile or Truck Repair Facilities, 8393, Automobile or Truck Body Repairing and Painting, 8397, Automobile or Truck Transmission Repairing and Rebuilding, and 8388, Rubber Tire Dealers. Read More >
CompEssentials® is the WCIRB's online educational training program offering access to a series of on-demand, self-paced courses that are comprehensive, convenient and provide an overview of the fundamentals of workers’ compensation insurance. These courses are an essential foundation for both new and experienced insurance professionals to understand California regulations. Read More >
The USRP at Part 3, Standard Classification System, Section IV, Special Industry Classification Procedures, Rule 6, Stores, provides instructions for determining whether a store is a wholesale or retail store, instructions for determining the applicable store classification based on the types of merchandise sold, and directives to separately classify certain store employees. Read More >
Does your company have questions about the workers’ compensation system and would like to learn more about the WCIRB’s free educational resources, products and services to help you do your job? Read More >
Located in the Learning Center, the Classification page makes it easy for you to find everything related to classifying a business – including web articles on trending topics, educational information and online tools. Read More >
This edition of News and Notes highlights updates, reminders, new resources and upcoming events from the WCIRB. WCIRB.com has a New Look! This week, the WCIRB launched the refreshed WCIRB.com website that includes a brand new look and feel, an enhanced site search and one-stop pages with content geared specifically towards the needs of those involved in workers’ compensation insurance such as: Read More >
The WCIRB hosted three webinars to discuss the proposed changes and to address questions about the changes. If you missed these webinars, you may now access the video recordings and presentation materials for each webinar on the Webinars page in the Learning Center on WCIRB.com Read More >
WCIRB Connect can provide TPEs access to rate sheets, inspection reports, experience modifications and other policyholder information, and policy and unit statistical report information. Learn about the different access levels for TPEs.  Read More >
The WCIRB recently submitted its January 1, 2018 Regulatory Filing, which included proposed changes to the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System. Read More >
The WCIRB recently submitted its January 1, 2018 Regulatory Filing, which included proposed changes to the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System. Read More >
As part of its administration of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System, the WCIRB performs studies to ensure that USRP provisions and classifications are aligned with the California economy and reflect industry changes and new processes in the workplace. Read More >
To help agents, brokers, insurers and others understand the proposed changes included in the January 1, 2018 Regulatory Filing, the WCIRB has scheduled two upcoming WCIRB Mod Talk webinars.  Read More >
As part of its administration of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System, the WCIRB performs studies to ensure that USRP provisions and classifications are aligned with the California economy and evolving business operations. The WCIRB’s Classification Research team has completed a number of studies that result in proposals to eliminate, amend or establish classifications effective January 1, 2018. Read More >
The WCIRB’s online learning portal, WCIRB CompEssentials® is available for insurers, agents, brokers and other insurance industry professionals to gain insight on California’s workers’ compensation system. To enroll in CEU-accredited courses and access free educational videos and resources, register for a WCIRB CompEssentials account today. Read More >
This edition compares the classifications that apply to two popular types of after school programs. Read More >
If you are dealing with a pending workers’ compensation claim, you can quickly look up coverage information through the California Workers' Compensation Coverage Inquiry website. Visit https://www.caworkcompcoverage.com to find the name of an insurer that wrote a California workers' compensation insurance policy for a specific employer on a specific date within the last 5 years. Here’s some tips to keep in mind while performing your coverage information search: Read More >
Campsites are places where customers pay a fee to use a space for camping. In exchange for a nightly campsite fee, the customer has access to a designated camping spot where they can pitch a tent or park a trailer or recreational vehicle on a short term basis. Some campsites may offer organized activities such as nature walks or nightly campfires, however, participation in activities is optional and campers are free to spend time as they choose. Read More >
Having accurate payroll data is necessary because it is the basis for the policyholder’s insurance premium and their experience modification. Read More >
In California, a number of construction and erection classifications are divided into two separate classifications based on the hourly wage of the employee assigned to the classification and each of these classifications has a different advisory pure premium rate.  Read More >
WCIRB Connect offers insurers, agents and brokers so many features and options to quickly access policyholder information that it might be hard to keep track of them all. This edition of News and Notes highlights some easy-to-use tools and educational resources found in WCIRB Connect that users might have missed. Read More >
After a very wet winter, it’s finally spring and many people will want to spruce up their gardens. This edition compares two garden-related classifications that are sometimes assigned together. Read More >
The CRS report, accessed through WCIRB Connect®, features a fast and convenient way to access detailed information including up to 10 years of historical data for both experience rated and non-experience rated policyholders. Read More >
Significant changes were adopted effective January 1, 2017 to companion classifications in the Property Management/Operation Industry Group. Read More >
New multi-seat purchase features and free educational materials are now available on the WCIRB's workers' compensation online training program.  Read More >
While many employers in California engage in the rental or sale of party supplies, these employers do not all handle the same types of merchandise or provide the same services to their customers. This e-newsletter addresses how some of the most common party supply store operations are classified.  Read More >
As part of its continuing efforts to help insurers efficiently manage their data, the WCIRB will be launching a new feature in WCIRB Connect in the spring of 2017.  Read More >
Effective January 1, 2017,  Section V, Payroll – Remuneration, Rule 1, Payroll – Remuneration of the USRP was amended to define the term “market value” regarding lodging value that must be included as reported payroll. Read More >
Licensed casualty agents and brokers can quickly obtain detailed policyholder information on WCIRB Connect with the Comprehensive Risk Summary (CRS) Report. The fully downloadable and printable CRS Report includes the following information: Read More >
As part of its administration of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System, the WCIRB performs studies to ensure that USRP provisions and classifications are in line with the California economy and changes to various industries. Read More >
What information will you need to have when submitting ownership infomation in WCIRB Connect? Here are some tips to ensure ownership information submissions are processed timely and accurately. Read More >
The goal when classifying a policyholder’s business is to determine which classification(s) best describe its operations based on the rules found in Part 3 of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan1995 (USRP). But how do you ensure that you are applying the right classification to a business especially when workplace processes keep changing as industries evolve? Here are some tips and online resources available to help. Read More >
The WCIRB’s 2017 webinar schedule is now available! Check out the schedule below to see which topics would be of interest to you, and register for as many as you like. WCIRB webinars are free and open to anyone, so encourage your co-workers to sign up too. Read More >
The WCIRB regularly receives questions on how to classify a wide range of industries and operations. Recently, perhaps as a result of the passage of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act in November 2016, we have noted an increase in questions regarding classifications that apply to operations in the cannabis or marijuana industry. Read More >
The first course from the WCIRB CompEssentials online workers' compensation training program is Classifications Basics and is already receiving positive reviews. Read More >
The WCIRB is proud to announce that the first course in its CompEssentials® online workers’ compensation training program is now open for enrollment. Classification Basics offers comprehensive training on the Standard Classification System through nine self-paced modules, each approximately 15-20 minutes in length. Students who successfully complete this course will learn: Read More >
As a part of the WCIRB's multi-year, comprehensive review of the over 700 classifications, new alternate classification wordings were approved effective January 1, 2017, for operations performed by heating, ventilating and air conditioning contractors. Read More >
Seeking a more flexible and modern approach to educating its customers, the WCIRB recently began development of a new online educational workers’ compensation training program called WCIRB CompEssentials®. Read More >
Each year, the WCIRB reviews certain California industries and as part of its regulatory filing may propose adding or eliminating classifications to keep the Standard Classification System relevant by reflecting current industry practices. In 2016, the WCIRB performed a comprehensive study of the Property Management/Operation Industry Group that contains seven pairs of companion classifications applicable to various types of residential and commercial property operations. Read More >
“Can these businesses be combined?” This is a common question asked by agents, brokers and insurers when calling the WCIRB. What they really want to know is whether or not two entities can be insured on the same policy, or if the payroll and loss experience for two entities should be combined for experience rating. The answer is, it depends. Read More >
Earlier this month, the WCIRB joined hundreds of insurance agents and brokers from all over California to participate in InsurFest 2016, presented by the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of California (IIABCal). Read More >
Each year the WCIRB reviews certain California industries and as part of its regulatory filing may propose adding or eliminating classifications to keep the Standard Classification System relevant by reflecting current industry practices. This year, one of the new classifications established is Classification 5610, Contractors – construction or erection – all construction subcontracted, which is shown below: Read More >
Licensed casualty agents and brokers can now quickly obtain detailed policyholder information on WCIRB Connect with the Comprehensive Risk Summary (CRS) Report. The fully downloadable and printable CRS Report, which had previously been available only to insurers, includes the following information: Read More >
The payroll and loss data reported to the WCIRB by classification is a vital part of the pure premium ratemaking process. To help ensure the integrity of this data, the WCIRB conducts inspections of employers' operations for classification purposes and conducts test audits to validate the accuracy of the unit statistical report data that insurers submit subsequent to completing their final audit. Read More >
(Updated November 2016) As part of our ongoing mission to enhance customer service, promote efficiency, reduce costs and eliminate paper consumption, the WCIRB is pleased to announce that agents, brokers and insurers are now able to submit ownership information electronically through WCIRB Connect. This new feature replaces submissions using WCIRB Form 601, Notification of Change in Ownership and/or Combinability of Entities Form, which will no longer be accepted by the WCIRB effective December 1, 2016. Read More >
The accurate determination and reporting of payroll/remuneration under the correct classifications is essential to the development of accurate advisory pure premium rates and experience modifications.  Read More >
In this edition: USRP requirements when allocating an employee’s payroll into multiple classifications. Read More >
WCIRB Customer Service provides assistance to agents and brokers, insurers and policyholders on a wide variety of workers' compensation topics and WCIRB-related questions. Did you know that answers to many of these questions can be easily found on WCIRB.com, WCIRB Connect® and other workers’ compensation resources on the internet? Save time on the phone and take advantage of these online services: Read More >
The previous edition of the Classification and Test Audit Insight e-newsletter explained that if there is a classification that specifically describes the business, that classification must be assigned, and assignment by analogy to another classification is not permitted. Read More >
One of the challenges faced by insurers, agents and brokers is determining the proper classification for a business operation when there is no classification in Part 3 of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan–1995 (USRP) that specifically describes the operation. In these situations, the USRP directs that a classification is assigned by analogy. Read More >
Last year, the California Insurance Commissioner approved a change to the California Workers’ Compensation Experience Rating Plan–1995 (ERP) to use expected loss rates rather than advisory pure premium rates as the basis of experience rating eligibility. Read More >
The WCIRB often receives questions concerning when a “professional” employee of a private school assignable to Classification 8868, Colleges or Schools – private – not automobile schools – professors, teachers, or academic professional employees, meets the requirements for assignment to Classification 8810(1), Clerical Office Employees. While Classification 8868 specifically includes academic professional employees, many academic professional employees have job duties that are primarily clerical in nature. Read More >
After several years of research and outreach, the WCIRB is poised to begin publishing the first experience modifications based on the 2017 variable split plan. This is anticipated to occur shortly following the Insurance Commissioner’s decision on the January 1, 2017 Regulatory Filing. Read More >
Classification 8859 applies to computer programming, software development, and web application development or website operation. Since its establishment in 1993, Classification 8859 has consistently developed the lowest advisory pure premium rate of any classification. We receive many requests for clarification regarding which employers can be assigned to these low rated classifications. There are certain limitations on what operations can be assigned to Classification 8859 when an employer also performs operations that are assignable to other classifications. Read More >
Workers’ compensation insurance is complex and can be daunting for employers in California. Many employers commonly seek assistance to understand how their business is classified, how their experience modification is calculated, what should be expected at the final audit of their policy, what to do if they have a dispute with the insurer or the WCIRB, and other questions about the California workers’ compensation system. Read More >
The Single Enterprise Rule, found in Part 3 of the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan–1995 (USRP), is a component of the Standard Classification System which directs that activities that are normally associated with a specific business are assigned to the one classification that most accurately describes the entire business even if the business is operated at more than one location.  Read More >
Respondents to the 2015 WCIRB Voice of the Customer survey communicated their need for a tool to help them understand the likely impact of the 2017 experience rating changes to their experience modifications. The WCIRB listened and developed two Experience Modification Estimators. These Estimators are Excel-based applications that make it easy for users to estimate and compare experience modifications. Users will have the ability to obtain an estimated experience modification using the approved 2016 Experience Rating Plan values or the proposed 2017 Experience Rating Plan values. Read More >
As part of administering the Standard Classification System, the WCIRB routinely reviews the classification phraseologies contained in the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) to reflect changes in the California economy and changes to various industries. In this edition, we provide a summary of the Classification Research projects that have been prioritized for completion based on direction from the Classification and Rating Committee at the June 15, 2016 meeting. Read More >
Agents and brokers often ask how to obtain a copy of their client’s experience rating worksheet (ratesheet) or inspection report. The quickest way to access these documents is through WCIRB Connect, a free online service that agents and brokers can sign up for on WCIRB.com.  Read More >
January 2017 experience modifications will be issued as early as September—less than 3 months away! In the Mod Talk webinar series, the WCIRB continues outreach efforts to educate the workers’ compensation community on changes to the experience rating formula effective January 1, 2017. Read More >
The WCIRB receives questions regarding the workplace separation requirements that are often required to separately classify operations. It is important to recognize that physical separation is a defined term in the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP), and is significantly different from the separation requirements applicable to clerical office employees. Read More >
Employees involved in construction project management can be assigned to a variety of classifications. When construction project management employees are employed by a construction industry contractor, they are often engaged in supervising construction operations and are assigned to their employer’s governing classification as defined in the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) Read More >
Workers’ compensation insurance can be complicated and the WCIRB is always here to help, offering free educational webinars focused on trending workers’ compensation insurance topics and WCIRB products and services available to help agents, brokers and insurers do their job. Read More >
WCIRB Customer Service frequently receives questions about how to classify domestic or private residence employees. The California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System do not apply to domestic or private residence employees. The USRP addresses this issue in Appendix II, Payroll/Remuneration Table: Read More >
WCIRB Customer Service regularly answers questions on how to use the many different features of WCIRB Connect. The WCIRB News and Notes is a great way to stay informed on system enhancements and to learn new tips on how to maximize your experience on WCIRB Connect. In this edition, we offer some basics to get you started. Read More >
The California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) was amended effective January 1, 2014, to add Classification 9095, Event Market, Festival or Trade Show Operation. WCIRB Customer Service has received questions about how and when this relatively new classification applies Read More >
The 2017 enhancement to the experience rating formula is probably the biggest change to California’s experience rating system since 2010. To get everyone prepared for this change we have been presenting a series of webinars called WCIRB Mod Talks. Read More >
In this edition, we will examine Classification 8390, Automobile, Truck or Van Conversion or Customizing, as this classification includes a blend of automotive operations that, when performed individually, are assignable to separate Automotive Industry Group classifications. Read More >
Did you know that we’re less than 6 months away from issuing January 2017 experience modifications based on the new variable split formula? Are you ready to answer questions from policyholders? If you need education on the 2017 changes, you won’t want to miss our WCIRB Mod Talks webinar series. Read More >
There are some common operations performed at both exercise facilities and medical practices that specialize in sports medicine. In this e-newsletter, we will review the characteristics that define and distinguish fitness-related operations assigned to Classifications 9053(2), Exercise or Health Institutes, and 8834, Physicians’ Practices and Outpatient Clinics. Read More >
Increase your understanding of the California workers’ compensation system and the WCIRB by attending our educational webinars. Each 30-minute webinar focuses on a specific workers’ compensation topic, and gives you the opportunity to get your questions answered by WCIRB experts. Check out the schedule below for all of our 2016 educational webinars, which are free and open to anyone. Read More >
The California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) has three rules found in Part 3, Section III, General Classification Procedures that are on-point when classifying supervisory employees. They are Rule 3d, Miscellaneous Employees, Rule 4a, Clerical Office Employees, and Rule 5, General Inclusions. Read More >
“When will my policyholder’s x-mod be issued?” If you have worked in the workers’ compensation industry for any length of time, you have probably asked that question many times as you wait for January experience modifications to be issued by the WCIRB. Did you notice that the January 2016 experience modifications were issued earlier this year? Effective January 1, 2016, the Insurance Commissioner approved a change that bases experience rating eligibility on approved expected loss rates rather than advisory pure premium rates. Read More >
Many employers, particularly in the construction and farming industries, compensate their employees on a piece-rate basis. With the passage of Assembly Bill No. 1513, effective January 1, 2016, Labor Code Section 226 was amended to require those employers that pay their workers on a piece-rate basis to: Read More >
Beginning in March, the WCIRB will launch the new Claims Coverage Research feature for WCIRB Connect®. Claims Coverage Research provides insurer claims adjusters immediate access to detailed coverage information for policies back to 1996 to aid in proper claims handling. The Claims Coverage Research feature is available at no cost to WCIRB insurer members and will eliminate the need for insurer claims adjusters to submit hard copy coverage research requests. Read More >
Many employers design products in California, have the products made to their design specifications by separate or out-of-state businesses, and receive the completed merchandise in California for distribution. These employers are assigned to the applicable store or dealer classification and are not assigned to a manufacturing classification. There are two exceptions to this procedure, however, for employers that design clothing  or proprietary electronic  products in California. Read More >
Next month, the WCIRB will kick off a series of webinar discussions regarding the Experience Rating Plan changes coming in 2017. These webinars will cover what you need to know in order to answer questions from your clients and policyholders, and allow you to ask questions of the WCIRB regarding the potential impact of these changes. Make sure to register! Read More >
During the current drought, many new water wells have been drilled in California and many existing wells have been re-drilled to access deeper groundwater. The WCIRB has received calls regarding classifications applicable to water well drilling and related operations.  Read More >
We would like to thank those of you who participated in the WCIRB’s 3rd annual Voice of the Customer survey conducted in October. The annual Voice of the Customer survey is used to gauge the WCIRB’s overall performance, with questions focusing on four key areas — quality, accuracy, responsiveness and overall satisfaction. More than 12,000 stakeholders were invited to participate in the survey and we received nearly 900 responses.  Read More >
Many employers that operate as manufacturers, wholesale stores or dealers use the term warehouse to describe the portion of their facility used for material or inventory storage. The WCIRB regularly receives calls asking how to classify warehouse employees.  Read More >
Planning is already underway for 2016 and a number of exciting product enhancements are on the calendar for rollout in the first quarter. We will be refreshing and adding new content to WCIRB.com and making continued enhancements to WCIRB Connect® throughout the year. We will also conduct extensive outreach regarding the 2017 experience rating formula changes. Read More >
The California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995, at Part 3, Standard Classification System, Section III, General Classification Procedures, Rule 5, General Inclusions, provides a list of operations that are included in all classifications. As General Inclusions, these listed operations are assigned to the classification that otherwise describes and applies to the business, unless they are conducted as a separate and distinct enterprise having no relation to other operations of business.   Read More >
With 2016 quickly approaching, the WCIRB is ramping up outreach and education efforts around the approved changes to the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 and the California Workers’ Compensation Experience Rating Plan—1995 effective January 1, 2016, and we are also looking ahead to start providing more information about the 2017 changes. Read More >
The WCIRB has frequently received questions regarding the classifications applicable to employers that perform a variety of minor repair services at residential or commercial locations.  Read More >
Trending Now – New search options for WCIRB Research and Analysis, Pure Premium Rates added to Classification Search and a new Pure Premium Rate (WCRATE) product. Read More >
The WCIRB often receives questions regarding the classifications applicable to charter schools. Since 1992, California law allows local school boards, and in some limited circumstances county boards of education and the state board of education, to authorize charter schools. There are currently over 1,000 charter schools in California. Read More >
Marking a significant change in the timely availability of first quarter experience modifications, the WCIRB – upon the Insurance Commissioner’s approval of the WCIRB’s proposal to base experience rating eligibility on expected loss rates – began publishing 2016 experience modifications in September. As of mid-October, we have already published over 20,000 experience modifications with first quarter 2016 effective dates! Read More >
The WCIRB devotes significant resources to perform classification inspections each year to ensure that classifications are assigned accurately and that data is properly reported to the WCIRB.  Read More >
In a Decision dated September 18, 2015, California’s Insurance Commissioner approved January 1, 2016 changes to the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP), California Workers’ Compensation Experience Rating Plan—1995 (ERP)  and Miscellaneous Regulations for the Recording and Reporting of Data—1995. Read More >
As part of its administration of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) and the Standard Classification System, the WCIRB performs studies to ensure that USRP provisions and classifications are in line with the California economy and changes to various industries. Here are studies that are currently in progress and could potentially lead to recommendations to amend applicable USRP provisions effective January 1, 2017. Read More >
The WCIRB will be an exhibitor and educational provider at the 2015 Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of California (IIABCal) InsurFEST conference in Huntington Beach on November 4-6, 2015. The WCIRB’s Tim Beery and Caleb Stanton will offer a one hour continuing education (CE) credit course on upcoming workers’ compensation changes for 2016, and will highlight some experience rating plan changes that will take effect in 2017. Read More >
In this e-newsletter, we will review how fee-based operations provided to the public by private vocational schools may constitute as Multiple Enterprises based on the rules of the Standard Classification System. Read More >
One of the WCIRB’s core functions is ensuring that the Standard Classification System remains relevant to California’s ever changing business landscape. That’s why we have a unit dedicated to analyzing classifications to make sure that they continue to reflect distinct and identifiable industries comprised of employers engaged in a relatively similar set of operations. Read More >
In a previous Classification and Test Audit Insight e-newsletter, we reviewed the general definition and procedures for miscellaneous employees that are provided in the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) at Part 3, Standard Classification System, Section III, General Classification Procedures, Rule 3, Multiple Enterprises. Read More >
While the combination of our online resources and our Customer Service team can answer all of your questions regarding the WCIRB and its products and services, there are many workers’ compensation related topics which fall outside of the WCIRB’s jurisdiction or subject matter expertise. Here are some additional resources that may be helpful in finding answers to your workers’ compensation questions that are not within the WCIRB’s purview. Read More >
Employers that have operations assigned to two or more distinct classifications, other than the Standard Exception classifications, may have some employees that are defined as miscellaneous employees. The general definition of miscellaneous employees is provided in the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) at Part 3, Standard Classification System, Section III, General Classification Procedures, Rule 3, Multiple Enterprises, Subrule d. This Rule states, in pertinent part: Read More >
Classification inspections are among the many ways that the WCIRB ensures the quality of the data we use for experience rating and advisory pure premium rates. Here are the top five questions that insurance professionals ask regarding an upcoming inspection of an employer’s business. Read More >
In our April 8, 2015 WCIRB News and Notes, we shared our plans to launch enhancements to WCIRB Connect based on feedback that we received from our users. Many enhancements have already been launched and WCIRB Connect continues to evolve. Coming on or around August 1, we will add an enhancement to the policyholder search function that will add clarifying definitions to the “X-Mod History” grid of the Policyholder Details page. Read More >
Every bi-weekly edition of the Classification and Test Audit Insight highlights a common classification and test audit issue. As a subscriber, these helpful articles are delivered directly to your inbox, but did you know that you can access them on WCIRB.com too? More than 40 past editions of theClassification and Test Audit Insight are available in the WCIRB E-Newsletter archive and are searchable through the WCIRB.com search feature. Read More >
Access to WCIRB Committee agenda, minutes and related documents is now easier than ever via the brand new Committee Documents page in the Publications and Filings section of WCIRB.com.  Read More >
This edition covers using Collective Bargaining Agreements to validate the hourly wage of construction employees. Read More >
The WCIRB submitted a regulatory filing to the California Department of Insurance proposing a number of changes to the Insurance Commissioner’s regulations. Among the proposed changes is a recommendation to amend the experience rating formula to replace the fixed primary and excess split point with a variable split point based on an employer’s size. Read More >
This edition discusses which employment and vocational programs qualify for assignment to Classification 8806, Sheltered Workshops or Work Activity Centers. Read More >
This edition focuses on the California Workers’ Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP) directives for classifying business that provide spa, massage and personal appearance services. Read More >
Here at the WCIRB we are committed to continuously improving our products and services to ensure that we are meeting the evolving needs of our customers. But we can’t do this without your help. Over the last couple of years, we’ve significantly expanded your options for providing us with your feedback. And all feedback – whether it comes from an e-survey, a customer advisory board, a focus group, an e-mail, a voicemail, or communicated directly to one of our staff – is taken seriously. Read More >
The WCIRB often receives questions asking how to classify IT and computer help desk operations. Classifying such operations depends on the overall business of the employer and the duties of each employee. Read More >
The WCIRB has just added the approved July 1, 2015 pure premium rates as well as over 3,000 keywords to the online Classification Search tool. Classification Search is the fastest, and most useful online resource for helping users correctly classify operations and businesses. Read More >
When classifying an employer that engages in disaster cleanup and restoration operations several classifications are potentially applicable, based on the scope of the employer’s operations. These employers specialize in the initial cleanup operations at sites where fire or flood damage has occurred. Read More >
With the WCIRB’s move to our new Oakland office, we have updated all order forms used for requesting WCIRB products or policyholder information. This is a reminder to use the current forms found on the WCIRB.com website so that your request does not result in any delays.  Read More >
Logistics is commonly defined as the management of the flow of goods between the point of origin and the point of consumption in order to meet customers’ specific requirements. There are several classifications that can apply to employers engaged in logistics services. To correctly classify such employers, it is imperative to determine the services that the employer performs on a fee basis. Read More >
Last week, the WCIRB issued a pair of bulletins (Bulletin No. 2015-08 and Bulletin No. 2015-09) focused on our efforts to improve the efficiency of our communications while reducing both member costs and our impact on the environment. Read More >
The WCIRB has received questions regarding the classification applicable to construction site cleaning. There are several classifications that potentially apply to these operations, depending primarily on the employer’s overall business operations. Read More >
While the WCIRB successfully publishes most experience modifications at least 60 days prior to their effective date, there are times when an experience modification (X-Mod) cannot be published due to missing or incomplete data. Here are some of the most common reasons that the WCIRB cannot publish an X-Mod. Read More >
Classifications 9050(1), Hotels, and 9050(2), Motels, include provisions to separately classify certain employees as 9079(1), Restaurants or Taverns. Both of these classifications specify all employees other than employees exclusively engaged in restaurant or tavern operations. Read More >
Every insurer that is licensed to underwrite workers’ compensation insurance in California is required to have a dispute process to facilitate the resolution of policyholders’ issues. Similarly, the WCIRB has a dispute resolution process. Read More >
In this edition: USRP directives for classifying food trucks and other mobile food vendors. Read More >
The WCIRB Connect® online services (formerly “STAR Online”) can provide TPEs access to rate sheets, inspection reports, experience modifications and other policyholder information, and policy and unit statistical report information. Read More >
The WCIRB is pleased to announce the rollout of the first of several planned enhancements to its online services. To kick this off, on February 28th STAR Online will become WCIRB Connect®  – a new name that reflects our commitment to connecting our customers to the data and information they need. Read More >
In this edition: Policies with high wage dual wage construction classifications and roofing contractors are subject to additional auditing requirements. Read More >
In case you missed it during the rush of January 1 renewals, the WCIRB launched two new Education on Demand learning modules in late 2014. Read More >
In this edition: Information on 2015 updates to payroll minimum and maximum limitations, physical audit threshold, and classification changes. Read More >
The California Workers' Compensation Coverage Inquiry website (https://www.caworkcompcoverage.com) helps you identify the name of the insurer that wrote a California workers' compensation insurance policy for a specific employer on a specific date within the last 5 years.  Read More >
In this edition, factors to analyze when determining the classification applicable to tasting room operations. Read More >
The WCIRB exhibited and WCIRB President and CEO Bill Mudge was one of the featured speakers at InsurFEST 2014, presented by the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of California (IIABCal). Read More >
In this edition, when the value of meals or lodging provided to an employee must be added to the payroll developed during the policy term for unit statistical data reporting purposes. Read More >
In this edition,  learn more about the change to the Experience Rating Plan effective January 1, 2015. Read More >
In this special edition, Dave Bellusci, WCIRB Chief Actuary discusses the findings from the data of the WCIRB's Report on the State of the California Workers' Compensation Insurance System. Read More >
The WCIRB will be an exhibitor at the upcoming InsurFEST 2014 conference in San Francisco on November 6-8 and WCIRB experts in classification and experience rating will be on-hand to answer questions from attendees. Read More >
In this edition: Entities with majority common ownership comprise a single employer for classification purposes. Read More >
The California Department of Insurance held a public hearing on October 8, 2014 to consider the WCIRB's January 1, 2015 Pure Premium Rate Filing which was submitted to the CDI on August 19, 2014 and later amended on September 5, 2014. See related story, Amended Pure Premium Rate Filing Submitted to CDI. Read More >
The WCIRB's free online service for licensed agents and brokers and insurers, available at http://connect .wcirb.com, provides access to experience modifications right from your desktop and in some cases can help you determine why an experience modification has not been issued. The service will even email you when a specific X-Mod is issued. All of these features save you time. Read More >
In this edition: Special Industry Classification Procedures apply to California Electronic Product Manufacturing Classifications. Read More >
In this edition: Merchandisers are employed in a variety of industries that sell products to retailers. Read More >
The WCIRB submitted its January 1, 2015 Pure Premium Rate Filing to the California Department of Insurance on August 19, 2014. Once the Insurance Commissioner issues a decision on the Filing later this year, the WCIRB will begin issuing 2015 experience modifications. What data is used to calculate an experience modification? Read More >
In this edition, learn more about General Exclusions, operations that must be separately classified. Read More >
In this edition: Changes to the filing schedule will lead to earlier issuance of experience modifications next year Read More >
The WCIRB will produce two Classification 1.0 - Basics seminars this September - one in Burbank on September 11 and the other in San Francisco on September 17. Read More >
As part of its administration of the Standard Classification System in California, the WCIRB studies dual wage construction classifications periodically and recommends changes to the wage thresholds when appropriate. Proposed wage threshold changes are submitted to the Insurance Commissioner as part of a WCIRB filing, and, after providing an opportunity for public comment, the Insurance Commissioner has the authority to approve, reject or modify the WCIRB's proposal. Read More >
The California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan — 1995 (USRP) provides specific instructions on classifying wrecking or demolition operation. Read More >
The WCIRB has published two new modules to its Education on Demand library, The Workers' Compensation Dispute Process and About the WCIRB. These modules are available now in the Learning Center of www.wcirb.com. Read More >
In this edition: USRP rules regarding time card recordkeeping requirements. In the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan1995 (USRP), several rules include a requirement for time cards or time book entries. The WCIRB often receives questions regarding these documentation requirements. Read More >
In October 2013, the California Insurance Commissioner approved a change to the California Workers' Compensation Experience Rating Plan-1995  (Experience Rating Plan) that limits the impact of a single claim on an employer's experience modification if the employer was otherwise loss-free during the experience rating period. This change becomes effective on January 1, 2015. Read More >
In this edition: When employers in the Printing, Publishing and Duplicating Industry Group acquire equipment that allows for new products and services, it can change the applicable classifications. Read More >
The Learning Center section of the WCIRB website (www.wcirb.com) was designed as the central location for educational information. Here you will find the Online Guide to Workers' Compensation, links to Education on Demand video modules, a glossary, helpful links and answers to frequently asked questions. Online Guide to Workers' Compensation The Guide contains several modules covering the basics of workers' compensation insurance. These modules include: Read More >
WCIRB Connect includes a number of features designed to make policy quoting and underwriting more convenient for insurers, agents and brokers. In this edition of News and Notes, learn about two of these features: X-Mod Direct® and the Risk Summary Report. Read More >
The regulations contained in the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995  help determine reportable remuneration. But what about independent contractors? Read More >
Experience modifications that are calculated by the WCIRB rely on unit statistical data reported to the WCIRB by the insurer or insurers that wrote the workers' compensation policies during the experience period. When an insurer becomes insolvent, some or all of the insurer's data may not be used in the calculation of experience modifications. Read More >
Proposing changes to the Insurance Commissioner's regulations and advisory pure premium rates. Read More >
This edition focuses on reviewing the  classifications applicable to various types of weight loss programs and services. Read More >
Earlier this year, the WCIRB launched the Classification Search tool on WCIRB.com. This new functionality allows users the ability to enter keywords to find a list of all classification phraseologies that contain the keyword or that are commonly associated with the keyword. Classification Search is available in the Learning Center section of the WCIRB's website. Read More >
Medical transaction data reporting is now required in California for NAIC groups that write at least 1% of the California workers' compensation market and the WCIRB has launched the new California Medical Transaction Data Quality Assurance Program. Read More >
Correctly reporting the named insured on policy data submissions leads to properly matching the policy to the appropriate WCIRB records, ensuring an employer’s name is proper on an experience rating worksheet, and facilitating successful policy coverage searches. See how to properly format these records. Read More >
Reporting unit statistical loss corrections is a common source of questions for data reporters. Learn more about when a loss correction should be submitted. Read More >
Aggregate financial data reported by insurers is a critical component in the determination of advisory pure premium rates. Learn more about exactly what data is being collected and what it represents. Read More >
One of the most popular features of WCIRB Connect® is the ability for insurers as well as agents and brokers to access their policyholder's experience rating worksheets (rate sheets) and inspection reports. Users can also access these documents for any policyholder that has provided the user the appropriate letter of authorization. Read More >
In this edition, we highlight changes to the classifications applicable to laundry and dry cleaning operations. Read More >
March 1, 2014 marked the two year anniversary for the WCIRB's coverage information website (www.caworkcompcoverage.com). The purpose of the Coverage Website is to assist in identifying the name of an insurance company that wrote a California workers' compensation insurance policy for a specific policyholder on a specific day within the last 5 years Read More >
When a school assigned to Classifications 8868, Colleges or Schools - private – academic professionals / 9101, Colleges or Schools - private, or 8875, Public Colleges or Schools, also provides before school or after school day care programs for the schools' students, only the school classifications will apply.  Read More >
The WCIRB Customer Service Department provides assistance to insurers, agents and brokers and policyholders on a wide variety of workers' compensation issues. In a typical year, the Customer Experience team responds to more than 100,000 inquiries. Read More >
When more than one classification applies to operations that are closely related, it is important to understand the boundaries of each classification. For example, the WCIRB has fielded questions regarding Classification 0042, Landscape Gardening, and 0106, Tree Pruning, Repairing or Trimming. Read More >
The WCIRB often receives inquiries regarding whether an experience modification will be revised when a claim is closed. The Closed Claim rule (California Workers' Compensation Experience Rating Plan–1995 (ERP), Section VI, Rule 12, Closed Claims) provides that an experience modification may be subject to revision whenever claims that were used in calculating the experience modification are reported as closed pursuant to the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan–1995 (USRP). Read More >
As part of its administration of the Standard Classification System, the WCIRB routinely reviews the classification code phraseologies contained in the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan1995 (USRP) to reflect changes in the California economy and changes to various industries. In 2013, the WCIRB began a multi-year, comprehensive review  of the over 700 classifications contained in the USRP to ensure that the scope of each classification is clearly defined and to include information as needed pertaining to related classifications.  Read More >
Labor Code Section 3701.9, which took effect January 1, 2013, prohibits professional employer organizations, leasing employers, temporary staffing agencies and any employer regardless of name or form that is determined to be in the business of providing employees to other employers (collectively, Labor Contractors), from obtaining a certificate of self-insurance. All previously issued self-insurance certificates for Labor Contractors are revoked as of January 1, 2015. Read More >
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. Read More >
The California Workers' Compensation Experience Rating Plan - 1995 (ERP) at Section V, Rule 4, Application of Experience Modification to Policies Covering Employee Leasing Arrangements, provides requirements for workers' compensation policies written where an entity utilizes the services of a third party (Labor Contractor) to provide its workers for a fee or other compensation. Read More >
Effective January 1, 2014, Classification 5606, Contractors  construction or erection, was amended for clarity to include management level employees such as safety managers, project managers and engineers, who are not in the direct chain of command over construction operations but whose duties include walking through a construction site during the construction phase, provided the insured retains two levels of supervision over the construction crew(s) or where all operations have been subcontracted to licensed subcontractors. These amendments, which are included in Classification 5606 shown below, do not represent any change to established classification procedure; rather, the amendments were for clarity only. Read More >
This edition covers the impact of ownership on experience rating which led to a question about how ownership is determined. Read More >
The WCIRB regularly receives the question: If two businesses are owned by the same person, will they have the same experience modification? Most likely, yes. If two or more businesses are owned by the same person, or share more than 50% common ownership, then they are combined for experience rating purposes. The payrolls and losses of all commonly owned businesses are combined to calculate a single experience modification, which is applied to all of the commonly owned businesses. The commonly owned businesses may be insured on a single policy or on separate policies. To learn more about ownership and its impact on experience rating, view the Ownership section of the Online Guide to Workers' Compensation. Read More >
Knowing the experience period, and the payroll and losses developed by policies beginning during the experience period, can help forecast how an experience modification may be impacted when new data is used in the calculation and older data is no longer used. Read More >
With the Insurance Commissioner's decision regarding the January 1, 2014 Regulatory Filing, and the soon to be issued decision regarding the January 1, 2014 Pure Premium Rate Filing, the WCIRB is putting the finishing touches on the 2014 editions of the California Workers' Compensation Uniform Statistical Reporting Plan—1995 (USRP), the California Workers' Compensation Experience Rating Plan—1995 (ERP) and the Miscellaneous Regulations for the Recording and Reporting of Data—1995 (Miscellaneous Regulations). Read More >
On September 13, 2013, the WCIRB submitted its January 1, 2014 Pure Premium Rate Filing to the California Department of Insurance proposing changes to advisory pure premium rates and the experience rating plan values used to calculate 2014 experience modifications. No experience modifications can be calculated until the plan values are approved by the Insurance Commissioner. Read More >
The WCIRB recently received a question regarding a business that is a combination dental office and medical clinic. Most of the employees are assigned to either Classification 8839, Dentists and Dental Surgeons - all employees - including Clerical Office Employees, or Classification 8834, Physicians - all employees - including Clerical Office Employees. The billing, administration and clerical office functions are performed by a common group of employees. Which classification should be assigned to the shared clerical staff? Read More >
A policyholder's eligibility for experience rating is determined by a number of factors. To determine eligibility, payroll developed during the experience period is totaled by classification code. These totals are multiplied by the pure premium rate that applies as of the effective date of the experience modification, not the insurer's rate, for the particular classification. The sum of these premium calculations must equal or exceed the minimum premium threshold. Read More >