WCIRB Releases Multi-Bureau COVID-19 Analysis


The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California (WCIRB), in collaboration with a number of other workers’ compensation rating bureaus, has released the COVID-19’s Impact on Workers' Compensation report. The full report is available in the Research section of the WCIRB website or by clicking the following link:

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the United States population, including its workforce, since March 2020. To better understand the pandemic’s impact on the workers' compensation industry, a collaborative effort was made to analyze COVID-19 claims characteristics, including representation from the following workers' comp bureaus: California, Delaware, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI). The analysis does not include experience from self-insured employers or denial and expense-only claims.

Claim and loss activity during 2020 as of year-end 2020 varies across jurisdictions, indicative of how the pandemic impacted individual states differently and at varying times. The early evaluation of the emergence of COVID-19 claims includes many uncertainties.

Key findings in the report include:

  • In California, COVID-19 claims represent 9 percent of total claim counts and 6 percent of total incurred losses.
  • Indemnity-only claims emerged as a significant share of reported COVID-19 claims.
  • In aggregate, COVID-19 claims that remained open have relatively higher case reserves due to the uncertainty of COVID-19 infections, later than average accident dates and the timing of the various waves of the pandemic.
  • COVID-19 indemnity claims closed more quickly than non-COVID-19 indemnity claims, partly driven by the large share of indemnity-only claims.
  • Despite the higher closure rate, the ratio of paid to paid plus case (incurred) severities on COVID-19 claims is lower when compared with that for non-COVID-19 claims.

Research Forum Webinar

Learn more about the report and hear insights from the rating bureaus that led the collaborative research effort in a free webinar. Click on the registration link below to sign up.

Industry Webinar: COVID-19's Impact on Workers' Compensation – A Multi-Bureau Collaboration

Thursday, January 20, 2022, 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM PT (2:30 – 3:30 PM ET)