While life may be returning to normal for many Americans in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, others continue to feel its aftereffects.

In Texas, for example, total workers’ compensation claims rose 34% in 2020 from 2019, Business Insurance reported June 3. The article noted the Texas Dept. of Workers Compensation released a report citing an increase in COVID-19 claims. This halted a 20-year decline in WC claims, at least temporarily.

Texas workers’ compensation COVID statistics

More than 48,000 COVID claims and 250 deaths were reported by insurers in Texas between Jan. 1, 2020, and May 9, 2021. The insurers accepted nearly half of all claims that included a positive coronavirus test.

Most of the benefits were indemnity, with insurers and employers paying $24 million as of March 31, 2021, Business Insurance reported. This included $10.9 million in employer salary continuation, $12.9 million in workers’ comp income benefits, $245,000 in death benefits and $120,000 in burial benefits.

In addition, insurers and employers paid out $17.3 million in medical costs as of April 22, 2021. Just over one-quarter was paid by commercial insurers.

Source: Business Insurance

Minnesota to pay $35 million in riot claims

But the coronavirus isn’t the sole contributor to the increase in workers’ comp cases. Another factor is civil unrest.

City leaders in Minneapolis are reviewing workers’ compensation packages of approximately $35 million for former police officers who departed during the protests following the death of George Floyd in May of 2020.

About 200 former officers and firefighters left after claiming physical injuries or post-traumatic stress disorder from the riots and burning of the 3rd precinct, according to the Law Officer website and media company.

The Minneapolis City Council must approve settlements to the officers. One package was valued at $250,000. However, Fox News affiliate KMSP-TV reported an attorney for the officers average settlement payouts will be $175,000.

Out of curiosity, the team at LeadingResponse analyzed search patterns for people seeking worker’s comp representation. On a scale of 0 to 100, the most common Google search term scores a 100. If half as many people are using that phrase, the score drops to 50.

Over the seven-day period ending June 8, the popularity of “workers comp attorney” peaked June 4 at 100, June 5 at 94, and June 6 at 94. In other words, that search term was the most popular for that practice area in the beginning of June.

LeadingResponse does more than monitor trends. We work with attorneys to help them grow their caseloads. LeadingResponse can send physically injured workers’ compensation leads directly to your phone, email, or preferred CRM. We filter all leads and deliver them in real-time.

To reserve your WC leads, call (877) 577-9505 and speak with our experts.