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Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission Repeals Emergency Rule

Christina Anderson
April 27, 2020

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April 27th --Today the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission (IWCC) voted unanimously to repeal the April 16th emergency rule that created a right for injured workers to a rebuttable presumption if they contracted or were exposed to COVID-19 citing that the legal challenge filed on Friday would cause significant delay and create uncertainty for the rule. IWCC Chairman Brennan mentioned the litigation costs as another factor. 

While current statute may provide workers' compensation or occupational disease benefits based on the facts of the claim of the petitioner regardless of their profession, trade or worker classification, the statute DOES NOT provide a rebuttable PRESUMPTION to workers (other than first responders as delineated in the statute).

This is a SIGNIFICANT victory for the Illinois business community and while the emergency rule has been withdrawn, we fully expect that legislation will be filed in the General Assembly. IWCC Chairman Brennan is creating a task force to review other avenues to address the issue. Nearly twenty states have passed a presumption but limited it to first responders and health care workers. 

April 24th--Here is information on the most recent Illinois Workers Compensation legal update. The ruling on COVID – 19 being presumptive is being challenged. Many thought this would be challenged due to the Commission exceeding its authority when the changes were originally passed. 

In other words, we’ve got the challenge flag but the ruling on the field is still under review and we should wait until we have some more information.

This is a fluid situation and we hope to know more about the final outcome soon! The next hearing is scheduled for May 4th.

 

NCCI Updated Guidance to Insurance Carriers

April 20th -- Based on an update released yesterday by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI), the recent Illinois Workers Compensation Commission (IWCC) amendment on April 13th went too far. NCCI issued a letter guiding insurers to prohibit the use of COVID claims in Experience Modifications.  

 

The NCCI also created a new class code, 0012, which details how employees that are being paid to be at home, but are not working, will NOT have their payroll counted

-- meaning there will be NO premium charged for any payroll to employees who are not working.  Please Click here to view the NCCI FAQ .