Insights

WCB Alberta Premium Payments 2020 and 2021

Posted in: Claims Costs | Posted by Rebecca Ingram on October 16, 2020

In March 2020, the Alberta government announced new measures to provide immediate financial relief to private sector employers in direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This included: Premium payments for 2020 deferred until 2021Refund of any 2020 premiums paid50% of 2020 premiums waived for small and medium sized private sector employers once invoicing resumes in 2021No interest charged on unpaid 2020 premiums While this has provided much welcome assistance for employers struggling to figure out how to navigate these uncertain times, a reckoning is rapidly approaching and employers need to start preparing now for when WCB Premium invoicing resumes in 2021. Employers will still be required to report their actual assessable earnings for 2020 plus their estimated assessable earnings for 2021 by February 28, 2021. Employers that took advantage of the Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) will have to remember to include the applicable amounts in the actual assessable earnings […]

Are Employers Absorbing the Cost of COVID-19?

Posted in: Claims Costs | Posted by Rebecca Ingram on September 28, 2020

We are all trying to settle into our ‘new normal’ in a post-pandemic world. Unless and until there is a vaccine, COVID-19 will continue to play a significant role in how we navigate moving forward, however, some things never change such as work-related accidents and Workers’ Compensation (WCB) premiums payments. COVID-19 has impacted WCB claims in three ways: COVID-19 Claim Entitlement: While most provinces had provisions in place to deal with emergency situations and occupational exposure to infectious diseases, the criteria under which claims were accepted under these provisions was relatively narrow. Due to the lockdown imposed in mid-March the number of industries deemed as ‘essential services’ broadened, resulting in a larger cohort of essential workers being identified.  Provincial workers’ compensation boards responded by expanding coverage for these front-line workers should they contract COVID-19, as a result increasing the potential number of associated WCB claims. More information about COVID-19 claim […]

COVID-19 and WCB Claims

Posted in: Claims Costs,Worker's Compensation Board,Workplace | Posted by Rebecca Ingram on April 28, 2020

As COVID-19 continues to hold us in its grasp and businesses scramble to figure out how to survive the long term impact of the pandemic, new workers’ compensation issues are emerging. While essential businesses and services remain open, there will undoubtedly be work-related incidents and accidents and for the most part, those workers’ compensation claims will be processed as they always have been. However, the novel coronavirus is redefining guidelines as they relate to acceptable occupational disease claims, at least for now. Prior to this pandemic, acceptable Workers’ Compensation (WCB) claims were primarily limited to front line health care or emergency response workers who contracted a communicable disease, with few exceptions being made in individual circumstances. When the provincial and federal governments mandated the closure of non-essential businesses and ordered everyone to stay at home the goal was to stop the spread of the virus and control the pandemic. Workers […]

10 Things to Check on Your 2020 WCB Premium Rate Statement

Posted in: Claims Costs,WCB Law,WCB Premium Reduction | Posted by Rebecca Ingram on December 10, 2019

In case you missed it, your 2020 WCB Premium Rate Statements have been issued. This statement not only advises you of the WCB Premium rate you have been assessed for the coming year but also provides you with the information used to calculate your rate. According to current information, WCB 2020 premium rates in British Columbia, Manitoba and Saskatchewan will remain the same or drop from the 2019 levels, while Alberta will see a slight increase. The rate-setting process is complex and even the smallest change in the data used can have a significant impact on the amount of premiums you pay. Therefore, it is important to consider the following questions while reviewing your statement: Is your Company name/address correct? Have your operations or business changed? Are you classified in the most appropriate Industry? Has your Industry Code changed? Are you being assessed a surcharge? For Alberta employers, are you […]

No Time Loss (NTL) Claims Cost Threshold Increase 2019

Posted in: Claims Costs | Posted by Rebecca Ingram on January 15, 2019

Earlier this month, the WCB Alberta announced an increase to the cost threshold used to exclude No Time Loss (NTL) claims from the experience rating calculations that establish WCB premiums. The threshold is subject to annual review and although cost threshold increases are not usually a benefit to employers, an increase to the NTL claims cost threshold is. For claims occurring in 2019, the threshold will increase from $1,400 to $1,500. Claims occurring in 2019 will first be used for experience rating calculations in 2021. For NTL claims occurring in 2017 and 2018, the threshold is $1,400. For claims occurring in 2016, the threshold is $1,300. For claims occurring in 2015 and prior years, the threshold used is $1,000. What is an NTL claim? The WCB Alberta defines an NTL claim as a situation where, following a work-related accident, an injured worker returns to regular duties without losing time from […]

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