Tag Archives: time loss

Postal Delays Impact Our Clients

Postal delays impact our clients in many ways. I work for Causey Wright in the accounting department. I have noticed how the recent U.S. Post Office delays have affected our clients. Where it normally takes a day or two for clients to get their checks through the mail, it’s now taking several days, in some cases up to two weeks. 

It would be easier, for us and our clients, if all of our clients had direct deposit set up. It would be more efficient if all of the insurance companies that manage workers’ compensation cases could deliver payments to us via electronic deposit. But, for various reasons, they do not. 

As a result, we receive most payments from the Department of Labor and Industries electronically, but many payments from insurance companies and self-insured employers are paid by paper check.

Of interest, most self-insured employers will provide direct deposit to their claimants, but refuse to provide payment electronically to a law firm if the worker has representation. Punishment, perhaps? 

Most, but not all, of our clients take advantage of our ability to transfer funds to them electronically. Many still prefer to receive a paper check. We have to respect our clients wishes, understand their different situations and work with them to best serve their needs.

Impact of Postal Delays

I don’t think people understand how serious this is, especially for our clients who are either elderly or have serious health conditions. The recent postal delays affect their source of income, their livelihood, and their ability to pay their bills. The post office delays are affecting their standard of living. 

These people have worked hard and should be treated with respect for their hard work. Having to recover after an injury is hard enough without postal delays causing more problems. This situation saddens me, especially when this is happening to these populations of people. 

My own mother, who is 75 years old, loves to send cards to her family. She likes to send us notes and thank you cards. Now that joy is causing her stress because of the postal delays. I just think that the elderly deserve all our respect and this is causing so much stress on their lives. They deserve to receive their mail on time and to send mail to their family and pay their bills through the mail without being totally stressed about it.

Prior Posts on Related Topics

DLI News: Telehealth Visits

Temporary Telehealth Visits Payment Policy 

To help support containment of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Department of Labor and Industries has issued a new temporary telehealth visits policy. This temporary telehealth policy allows medical providers to use the worker’s home as an origination site in some instances to treat injured workers. This policy is effective 3/9/2020, and expires 7/3/2020. This is an emerging situation, and this policy may be updated as needed.

L&I’s current payment policy and fee schedule already covers phone calls between providers and workers, and telehealth visits when provided at a medical origination site. Please see the DLI Fact Sheet for more details of the current policy: LI Telehealth Fact Sheet AUG 2019.pdf

The new temporary policy will stipulate the following: 

  1. In addition to providing telehealth services under the current payment policy, providers who can normally provide telehealth services using video remote technologies may now bill the following CPT© evaluation and management codes with home as an origination site: 
    1. 99211
    2. 99212
    3. 99213
  2. The documentation requirements will follow the Department payment policy established in Medical Aid Rules and Fee Schedules (MARFS) Chapter 10: Evaluation and Management Services. Under this temporary measure, providers will be required to include a note about the emergency situation (limiting exposure to COVID-19, in this case) that prompted this encounter, as well as noting that the originating site of the worker is home.
  3. Providers are encouraged to implement their clinic’s emergency response plan.

On July 3, 2020, the temporary L&I emergency telehealth policy is scheduled to end, unless the Department decides an extension is needed. This is an emerging situation, and this policy may be updated as needed.

Policy Does Not Provide Equipment to Workers

Additionally, the temporary policy will state that L&I will not provide the worker with or reimburse the worker for equipment. If a worker doesn’t have access to high-speed internet via computer or a camera phone with reliable connectivity, the provider must work with the worker to identify an alternative.

Instructions to Claims Managers re: Time Loss Payments

Claims Administration has decided to instruct claim managers not to automatically stop time loss benefits if the restrictions on an APF expire because the worker was unable to be seen in person due to COVID-19 precautions. Claim managers will be advised to assess each case and staff with their supervisor and/or ONC to decide how best to manage the claim during the period of the forthcoming temporary policy.

Questions on the payment policy after it’s published? Contact us at HPPM@Lni.wa.gov.  

If you have questions or concerns about your claim, feel free to contact our firm for assistance. We provide a free case analysis and would be happy to discuss your circumstances with you.

Prior Post with Related Content


3.6% COLA Increase For Pension And Time Loss, Effective July 1

For most workers* injured before July 1, 2011, time-loss and pension benefit payments will increase 3.6 percent based on the change in the state’s average wage, as announced by the Department of Employment Security on June 19.

The increase also applies to pension benefits paid to family members of those who died because of a work-related accident or disease.

The increase becomes effective July 1, 2012.