Retro freeze is on the way

If you’re in retail, manufacturing, or food processing, listen up! We’re less than a month away from the October 2 freeze date for the following Approach retros:

  • PITB Platinum
  • PITB Select
  • SMART Advantage

What’s a Freeze Date? Read our Washington workers’ comp freeze dates explained

With only 18 business days remaining, it’s time to put the finishing touches on our efforts to get claims costs as low as possible before the Freeze. Remember, the lower the claims costs at Freeze, the bigger the potential refund for your Retro group.

So far, we’ve been working with employers to:

  • Get all injured employees back on the job in a light-duty position that’s within the restrictions listed on the Activity Prescription Form
  • Extend formal job offers to injured employees
  • Submit light-duty job descriptions to attending providers for approval
  • Schedule closing rating examinations

The lower the claims costs at Freeze, the bigger the potential refund for your Retro group.

Washington workers’ comp and COVID-19

From very early on, L&I has stated that allowed coronavirus workers’ compensation claims will not impact rates or Retro refunds. Retail, manufacturing, and food processing have a high number of key workers who have been on the job throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, so it’s good to know that a COVID-19 claim does not directly cause any concerns related to the Freeze date.

The most important thing your company can do is follow industry guidance for COVID-19 to keep workers safe and reduce the risk of fines in the event of a workplace safety inspection.

Claim closure checklist for September

For claims that aren’t related to COVID-19, remember that those costs will affect your rates and refunds, no matter if they were filed before or during the pandemic. It’s more important than ever to bring your injured employees back to work on a temporary or permanent basis, so that your workers’ comp costs are as low as possible while your business manages the impacts of COVID-19.

The clock is really ticking now, especially with most L&I employees having an additional furlough day this month. Here are the top three items to check on as we get to the October 2 retro freeze:

  1. Has the L&I claim file been documented to showcase the return-to-work status?
  2. Have overpayments for time-loss or other indemnity costs been documented?
  3. Do the reserves reflect the most accurate claim status?

Be sure to contact your Approach retro coordinator right away if anything changes in the status of your injured employee. It’s critical that we get the claim file updated promptly so that the we’re in the best possible position for Freeze.