SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A new law designed to protect California workers now classifies COVID-19 illness as an injury under workers’ compensation if you contracted it within 14 days of an outbreak at work.
An outbreak is defined as four employees with COVID-19 for a small business (under 100 employees) or 4% of all employees at a larger business (more than 100 employees).READ MORE: VIDEO: Yosemite Falls Flows Again After Bomb Cyclone-Fueled Atmospheric River
The law assumes employees contracted the virus at work unless their employer can prove otherwise, and that’s why some businesses are hiring private investigators.READ MORE: 1 Person Killed In Apparent High-Speed Crash On Elverta Road Near Gibson Ranch
If you get COVID-19 at work and plan to file a workers comp claim, be prepared to answer these questions provided by C&W Claims, a background information investigations firm.
- What level of quarantine have you followed outside of work prior to being diagnosed?
- Are there other possible exposure locations for this employee, i.e., a school, an event that was not yet canceled, stores, restaurants, gyms, visiting someone in a hospital recently?
- What other family members are in the household and have they had any known exposures? (Names, Symptoms, Treatment)
- Have you had respiratory problems in the past? Prior pneumonia? Pre-existing conditions like asthma or allergies? Where did they treat? (Name/place/address/phone number)
- Have you ever smoked cigarettes, vaped, drank alcohol, used recreational drugs?
- How often do/did you visit relatives who don’t haven’t lived with you during the outbreak? Were they sick? When? How? Symptoms?
- If a positive test result: when, where, who? Get the address of the location, and/or phone number and the proper name.
- How many children do you have? Did they bring home anything? When? What school did/do they go to?
- When did the school shut down, or when did they stop going?
- What were the last few restaurants you went to? When? Where?
- Ask about safety protocol at work? Were other employees adhering to them?
- Did management follow up and enforce protocols?
Because COVID-19 could lead to long-term health issues, like lung or heart problems, the claims can be ongoing, which is investigators’ searches go beyond virus exposure.