WCRI: Workers’ Compensation Per Claim Benefits in Illinois Rise 11% in 2020, Possibly an Effect of COVID-19
Cambridge, MA (WorkersCompensation.com) – Per-Loss Compensation Benefits Increased 11% in 2020; two-thirds of this growth was driven by an increase in the duration of temporary incapacity (around one week); a third of the growth was driven by an increase in wages for injured workers, according to a recent study published by the Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI).
“Certain aspects of Illinois’ economy may have contributed to changes in per-claims compensation benefits before and during the pandemic,” said Ramona Tanabe, executive vice president and general counsel of WCRI. “A measure of labor market conditions at the macroeconomic level is the unemployment rate. In 2020 and 2021, unemployment rates in Illinois were above the national average. This means fewer jobs available for injured workers and therefore a longer duration of temporary incapacity.
Here are some of the other findings of the study:
- Total costs per claim with more than seven lost days in Illinois increased 2%; however, different factors contributed to this compared to previous years.
- The percentage of claims with more than seven days off work and benefits per claim in 2020 increased while medical payments and benefit delivery costs per claim decreased.
- The average duration of temporary disability increased to between 1 and 2 weeks in most industries in Illinois. The increases in Illinois were higher than in the other states in the study.
- The average weekly wage of injured workers increased by 4% in 2020; many industries contributed. Growth of around 4% in 2020 in Illinois and other states in the study was faster than in previous years.
The 22nd Edition of CompScope™ Benchmarks for Illinois provides ongoing annual monitoring of how compensation benefits, medical payments, and benefit delivery expenditures per claim in the Illinois workers’ compensation system change over time, and how these measures compare to those of 17 other states. This edition analyzes non-COVID-19 workers’ compensation claims with injury dates between 2015 and 2020 (assessed as of March 31, 2021) to provide insight into the impact of the pandemic on workers’ compensation claims. non-COVID-19 workers at the start of the pandemic.
To learn more about this study or to purchase a copy, visit https://www.wcrinet.org/reports/compscope-benchmarks-for-illinois-22nd-edition. Evelina Radeva is the author of this study.
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