California -- Work Comp Bills Range from Staph Infections to Horse
Attention: Top [03/10/09]
After wrapping up a months-long battle over the state budget, lawmakers
rushed to meet a Feb. 27 deadline to introduce new bills for the 2009-10
Other measures can appear later as lawmakers “gut and amend” legislation
– meaning pulling language out of a bill and putting in new language on
a new subject. But these are the workers' compensation measures that
have been introduced so far:
AB 128 by Joe Coto, D-San Jose. Extends the cancer presumption afforded
to public safety workers after termination from three months to one year
for each full year of the requisite service.
AB 361 by Bonnie Lowenthal, D-Long Beach. Provides that, regardless of
whether an employer has established a medical provider network or
entered into a contract with a health care organization, an employer
that authorizes medical treatment shall not rescind or modify that
authorization for any reason, including, but not limited to, the
employer's subsequent determination that the physician who treated the
employee was not eligible to treat that injured employee.
AB 409 by Martin Garrick, R-San Diego. Would state that the payments and
costs of an insolvent insurer which have been incurred but not reported
are included within the claim payments and costs to be paid for by the
California Insurance Guarantee Association.
AB 483 by Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo. Requires the Workers' Compensation
Insurance Rating Bureau to establish and maintain a website to assist
the public in determining whether an employer is insured for workers'
AB 516 by Roger Niello, R-Fair Oaks. Requires, for injuries occurring on
or after Jan. 1, that temporary disability benefit amounts payable to an
injured worker be not less than an amount equal to the employee's weekly
earnings from all employers, nor more than $1,260, or 1.5 times the
state average wage, whichever is greater.
AB 586 by Alyson Huber, D-El Dorado Hills. Includes police officers for
state universities in the presumption for tuberculosis presumptions and
university firefighters in the presumption for hernia, blood-borne
infectious disease, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus skin
AB 615 by Niello. Deletes the definition of first aid in existing law
and would authorize the administrative director to adopt regulations to
define first aid and other terms.
AB 664 by Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley. For hospital employees, creates a
presumption of causation for blood-borne infectious disease, neck or
back impairment, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus that
develops or manifests itself during the period of the person's
employment with the hospital.
AB 801 by Michael Duvall, R-Yorba Linda. Would authorize the Department
of Insurance to use individually identifiable information for purposes
of investigating and prosecuting insurance fraud.
AB 879 by Ed Hernandez, D-West Covina. Would require the insurance
commissioner to initiate and conclude a hearing and issue a final
decision regarding the proposed pure premium rate within 90 days.
AB 933 by Paul Fong, D-Mountain View. Would require utilization-review
physicians and psychologists who treat injured workers to be licensed in
AB 948 by Dan Logue, R-Marysville. Would provide that if an injured
worker's work restrictions are not yet known within 10 days of the last
payment of temporary disability, the employer is not required to send
the notice regarding the employee's supplemental job displacement
benefits until after the employee's work restrictions are known.
AB 1093 by Mariko Yamada, D-Davis. Provides that no workers'
compensation claim shall be denied solely because the motivation behind
what caused the employee's injury or death was related to an immutable
personal characteristic of that employee.
AB 1227 by Mike Feuer, D-Los Angeles. Limits full-pay temporary
disability benefits granted to public-safety workers under Labor Code
Section 4850 to regular, full-time workers, but eliminates the
requirement that these employees be members of the Public Employees'
Retirement System or the Los Angeles City Employees' Retirement System
or subject to the County Employees Retirement Law of 1937. The bill
would also include local park rangers, community college police, and
police of a school district among the employees entitled to full-pay
leave of absence. The bill would exclude employees of San Francisco City
AB 1469 by Michael Villines, R-Clovis. Replaces the word “workman” with
“worker” in Section 4651.2 of the Labor Code.
AB 1499 by Noreen Evans, D-Santa Rosa. Would authorize a fair to deduct
an additional 0.5% of the total amount handled in exotic parimutuel
pools of races for any breed, other than races solely for thoroughbreds.
This deduction would also be for similar purposes and subject to similar
conditions as the quarter horse racing association and harness racing
SB 3 by Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles. Would provide, for injuries
occurring on or after Jan. 1, 2010, for a supplemental job displacement
benefit in the form of a voucher for up to $6,000 to cover various
reeducation and skill enhancement expenses, as specified, which would
expire two years after the date the voucher is furnished to the employee
or 5 years after the date of injury, whichever is later.
SB 145 by Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord. Would provide that no workers'
compensation claim shall be denied solely because the motivation behind
what caused the employee's injury or injury resulting in death was
related to an immutable characteristic of the employee. Would also state
the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would apply
employment discrimination protections to workers' compensation law in
order to prohibit the wrongful reduction or denial of workers'
SB 146 by Roderick Wright, D-Los Angeles. Would authorize the Department
of Insurance to convene meetings with insurers to discuss emerging
trends and schemes involving insurance fraud and would provide that any
person sharing information pursuant to that authorization would be
protected from civil liability, as specified. This bill would also
require employers to send an employee an explanation of benefits notice
when the employer pays for certain medical treatments or services as a
result of the employee's workers' compensation claim, and would
authorize the employer to send a notice about other medical payments, as
SB 186 by DeSaulnier. Would delete the Dec. 31, 2009, repeal date of the
statute that allows employees to “predesignate” their treating
physicians prior to injury.
SB 313 by DeSaulnier. Would establish new penalties for employers caught
without workers' compensation coverage in an amount equal to the average
cost of workers' compensation insurance in the state for the three-year
period prior to the date of penalty assessment.
SB 342 by George Runner, R-Lancaster. Makes a nonsubstantive grammatical
change to Section 3702.1 of the Labor Code.
SB 403 by John Benoit, R-Bermuda Dunes. Would prohibit lien claims from
being filed more than one year from the date the health care provider,
or the health care provider's agent, was sent an explanation of benefits
or explanation of review paying or objecting to a bill in whole or in
SB 677 by Leland Yee, D-San Francisco. Would exempt farm workers
employed by their parents, child, spouse, or registered domestic partner
from mandatory workers' compensation coverage if the farm owners
register the employees with the director of the Department of Industrial
SB 683 by Ron Calderon, D-Montebello. Would require a group of
self-insurers to file an annual audit by an independent, certified
public accountant, but would prohibit audited financial or claim
information of individual members of the group self-insurer from being
SB 764 by Glorida Negrete McLeod, D-Chino. Repeals a statute that
requires health care organizations from paying fees to cover
SB 766 by Negrete McLeod. Would declare the intent of the Legislature to
enact legislation to deduct an additional percentage of the total amount
handled in parimutuel pools of thoroughbred horse races, to establish a
joint powers agency to collect that additional money and issue bonds,
and to use the money primarily for capital improvement financing.
SB 773 by Darrel Steinberg, D-Sacramento. States the intent of the
Legislature to enact legislation that would adjust permanent disability
To read any of the bills, go to http://www.leginfo.ca.gov <http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/>
and type the bill number into the search field.