Despite the economic slowdown resulting from the COVID-19 business closures, the total number of workers’ compensation claims reported to the Texas Division of Workers’ Compensation rose in 2020 by 34% compared to the previous year.
In a recent update on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the state’s workers’ comp system, the DWC said the rise in claims temporarily interrupted the two-decade downward trend of fewer workers’ comp claims each year. In the report, COVID-19 in the Texas Workers’ Compensation System, May 2021, the DWC revealed that as of May 9, 2021, insurance carriers reported more than 48,000 COVID-19 claims and 249 fatalities, nearly half of which involve first responders and correctional officers.
From Jan. 1, 2020, through May 9, 2021, insurance carriers reported a total of 48,663 COVID-19 claims to DWC. The DWC’s most recent report shows that 63% of claims involved injured employees who tested positive or were diagnosed with COVID-19. Insurance carriers had accepted 48% of COVID-19 positive test claims. There were more than 14,000 denials of COVID-19 claims with positive tests or diagnoses, however, only 85 disputes filed with DWC as of May 9 were disputed.
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