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Essential Workers Get Protections for Coronavirus Claims

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Governor Newsom signed an executive order to protect essential workers during the state’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown orders.

Retroactive to the date the order was issued: March 19, 2020, through July 5, 2020 – essential workers who contract COVID-19 shall be presumed to have contracted the virus on the job thereby entitling them to workers’ compensation benefits. The order also reduces the time in which an insurance company must accept or deny these COVID-19 claims from 90-days to 30-days.

As with all claims of injury or disease, a worker must demonstrate that the injury or illness was caused on or by the job. The executive order creates a rebuttable presumption that an essential worker who comes down with the illness during the relevant time-period, contracted it on the job and streamlines the benefit delivery timeframe. Though the employer would still have the opportunity to rebut this presumption, with for example, evidence that the worker contracted the virus through some other means or at some other time or place, the presumption will be incredibly important and helpful to workers and their families.

These workers may be entitled to medical treatment at no-cost, temporary disability benefits for up to two years, permanent disability for any impairments or permanent conditions caused by the virus, retraining benefits and, if the virus causes or contributes to the death of the worker, funeral expense benefits and between $120,000 and $250,000 or more in survivor-dependent benefits.

If you or a loved-one have contracted or believe you have contracted COVID-19 on the job, contact Espinoza Law Group at 213-667-0701 or for a free, no-obligation consultation regarding your rights

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