Industrial Commission Votes Unanimously to Expand Docket to All Issues
As we previously reported, the Industrial Commission of Ohio limited the types of hearings that could be heard in response to the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent transition to telephone hearings. The Industrial Commission held a Special Meeting June 3 at 10:00 am to determine if it will expand the limited docket to include additional issues. The Commissioners voted unanimously to put all issues back on the docket effective immediately. Hearings will continue to be held by telephone, scheduling 2 hearings per hour, with the exception of C-92 hearings, which will be scheduled at 6 hearings per hour.
COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation Claims
As expected, COVID-19 workers’ compensation claims have already begun being filed. According to the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, as of May 8, 2020, there were over 300 claims filed in Ohio for COVID-19.
- 70 claims have been allowed and 55 denied.
- Most of the claims have been from healthcare workers and first responders.
- The Bureau is deciding claims under the standards of the general occupational disease definition in R.C. 4123.01(F)
For more information, view our brief video regarding COVID-19 and Ohio Workers’ Compensation.
BWC Distributes Masks to State-Fund Employers
Governor Mike DeWine announced last week at least 2 million face coverings will be distributed to employers and workers across the state to weaken the impact of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) on the safety and health of Ohioans. Governor DeWine’s plan, called Protecting Ohio’s Workforce — We’ve Got You Covered, advised the BWC would fund the initiative and send at least 50 non-medical-grade face coverings in batches over several weeks, beginning May 20. The shipments target Ohio employers covered by BWC that are in good standing and report payroll to the agency. Employers will not be billed for the items and there will be no impact to employer premiums. For more information, visit here.
BWC Defers Employer Premiums Again
At a May 28, 2020 press conference, Governor Mike DeWine announced the Ohio BWC is deferring Ohio employers’ premium installments for the months of June, July, and August to help businesses keep their focus on the safety and well-being of their employees and customers.