The Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) has announced its program to support the state's businesses in light of COVID-19 disruptions. The agency has pushed back the due date for March, April, and May workers' compensation insurance premium installment payments until June 1, 2020. The delay applies for both public and private employees. Policies will not lapse nor incur penalties for non-payment during this period.
In addition, the BWC has offered guidance related to workers’ compensation claims. Highlights of their guidance include:
- Communicable diseases (including COVID-19) are generally not accepted as workers’ compensation claims due to exposure occurring in many ways. The BWC might allow a claim if your job creates a special hazard or risk leading to work exposure to the virus.
- The BWC staff is teleworking and continues to process new claims. The normal appeals process also remains in place.
- Many claim payment plans have been extended to April 30, 2020.
- If you need to contact your claims service specialist, use email for the fastest response. Email addresses can be found on the bottom of any Ohio BWC correspondence. If you do not have access to email, call 1-800-OHIOBWC. If you are represented by an attorney call your attorney before contacting your claims service specialist.
- Face-to-face audits for self-insured and state fund employers have been suspended. Audits will continue by mail and virtually.
To review the BWC’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Frequently Asked Questions, visit
https://www.bwc.ohio.gov/downloads/blankpdf/COVID-19-BWCFAQs.pdf. For questions, contact BWC at BWCCOVID19@bwc.state.oh.us.
If you have questions or would like to discuss COVID-19’s effect on you or your business, contact a member of the HBK CPAs & Consultants team.