Workers Compensation Insurance – When It Comes To Claims, Time is Money

The old adage that time is money is certainly true when it comes to handling workers compensation claims.  While the Form 19 claims form no longer states that the claim must be filed within 5 days of the accident or injury occurrence, moving fast on a workers compensation claim has a big impact on the size of the claim and the subsequent loss costs that will affect the employer.  If you are an employer with employees and have a workers compensation policy, you should take a little bit of time before a claim happens to discuss with your agent what you will need to do to move the claim forward quickly.

Take a quick look at some insurance industry statistics related to the speed of claims reporting. 

Claims reported two weeks after the occurrence had an 18% higher payout than claims reported in the first week.

Claims reported three weeks after the injury had a 47% increase in total loss costs over those reported in the first week.

And to drill down further, claims reported in days 5 through 7 after the occurrence had a larger claim cost than those reported in days 1 through 4.

Claims reported with only a 3 day delay had an increased medical cost of 16% over those reported on the day of the occurrence.

And we can also see this trend in terms of litigation costs associated with late reporting of workers compensation claims.  Claims with a only a 3 day delay in reporting have a 50% greater chance of ending up in litigation.  And litigation will increase the total costs of the claims and drive up your workers compensation premiums over time.  To see how claims costs affect your premiums, click here.

So how does quicker reporting help to reduce the costs of a workers compensation claim?  First of all, it allows the insurance company to contact all parties involved more quickly and this reduces the costs and chances of litigation.  Once the injured worker has hired an attorney to represent him, then the claims process slows down considerably as the communication process now has another step involved.  Quick claim reporting also allows the insurance company to get involved with the injured worker sooner and begin to develop plans to get the injured worker back to work in a shorter time.  This not only reduces the costs of your future workers compensation claims, but it also cuts your downtime costs right away.

Last of all, consider that the longer the employee is out of work, the greater the burden on other co- workers in your company.  This negative impact can hurt morale and can also lead to a higher risk of injury to the remaining workers on the job.  In addition, hiring and training a temporary replacement worker can be very expensive.

At Clinard Insurance Group, in Winston Salem, NC  we want all insurance buyers to be informed consumers.  Looking only at the policy costs can be a deceiving way to purchase insurance and might leave your company out in the cold.  If we can help you with your business insurance, your workers compensation insurance, your general liability insurance, commercial auto insurance or life insurance, please call us, toll free at 877-687-7557 or visit us on the web at