Original Articles

  • Flash: BAKER RESPONDS TO AUDITOR’S REPORT

    In exclusive interviews and written communications with Workers’ Comp Executive former DIR Director Christine Baker responds directly to the State Auditor’s recent critical report. Baker, in her own inimitable fashion goes directly to the relevant points. This story can’t be found anywhere else – and we include links to the full text of the Auditors […]

  • Division’s Latest Amnesty Program Intended to Boost Reporting by Claims Adjusters

    The California Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) is rolling out its second amnesty program of 2017 intended to persuade claims adjusters to comply with state reporting requirements for workers’ comp data. The goal is to increase the amount of Subsequent Report of Injury (SROI) data that makes it into the Workers’ Compensation Information System (WCIS) […]

  • Company Officials Charged in Electrocution

    The Orange County District Attorney has filed criminal charges against the safety coordinator and two other principals of Five Star Plastering, based in Laguna Hills. Its employee was involved in a 2014 electrocution. The employer itself also faces charges. A two-man crew was erecting a banner at the Mission Viejo High School stadium to support […]

  • Insurance Department nabs trio for billing fraud

    The California Department of Insurance arrested three individuals including a registered qualified medical evaluator (QME) in a scheme to defraud health insurers by artificially inflating bills. The three face charges of conspiracy to submit at least $380,000 in fraudulent bills for laboratory services. Arrested were Dr. Edward Albert G. Balbas, chiropractor Jon Brunelle, and Alejandra […]

Curated Content Articles of Interest from Around the Web

    News Digest 1-16-2020

     

    California: $512K opioid crisis-related grant for Mother Lode job training

    California’s Mother Lode region has been awarded over a half-million dollars in federal funding to help mitigate the opioid crisis through job training. The funding is intended to provide employment and support services by paying for temporary workers in public or nonprofit organizations, supplementing training of new hires through on-the-job training, or paying for training and support services for those who want to become certified substance abuse counselors. The Central Sierra, Merced region and Humboldt County are the three workforce areas in the state identified as having high numbers of opioid fatalities. myMotherLode.com

     

    California fireman injured in Oregon entitled to workers’ comp

    A workers’ compensation judge has awarded a 72-year-old California fireman, who was injured in a hit-and-run crash in 2018 in Oregon, workers’ compensation. The fireman drove a water tender from California to assist firefighting in McKenzie Bridge and was walking across a highway after dark to get to his hotel room when a vehicle struck him and drove off. Register-Guard (Eugene, Ore.)

     

    Virginia Beach City Council gets update on response to mass shooting

    Nearly eight months since the mass shooting in Virginia Beach, Virginia, city council members were told nearly 500 employees filed workers’ compensation claims totaling almost $3 million in payouts, but the biggest impact continues to be to the workers themselves, many of whom are retiring in the wake of the shooting. WTKR (Norfolk, Va.) [with video]

     

    New initiative seeks to expedite federal employees’ return-to-work

    In 2018, 107,000 federal employees filed new workers’ compensation claims and received $3 billion in payments, according to the acting director of the Office of Management and Budget. In response, the new Protecting Employees, Enabling Reemployment Initiative tasks federal agencies, including the Postal Service, with developing specific strategies and goals to reduce injuries on the job and resulting time off of work. All agencies will also have to begin using the Labor Department’s electronic filing system, which OMB said would standardize the claims process and ease communication with injured employees. Government Executive

     

    For public safety workers in Minnesota, PTSD among most expensive workers’ comp claims

    Minnesota has offered post-traumatic stress disorder benefits since 2013 through workers’ compensation. The condition is the second-most expensive workers’ compensation claim for public safety workers in the state, just behind sprains and strains. About two-thirds of the PTSD claims are for lost time at work and one-third for medical expenses, the opposite of expenses for most workers’ comp claims. INFORUM