A bill to extend by two years presumptions about when COVID-19 is considered an occupational disease in California would conflict with proposals in another bill that would further limit the window for employers to investigate and accept liability for claims, according to an analysis by the California Workers’ Compensation Institute.
AB 1751, which would preserve the presumptions that lawmakers created in 2020 and are scheduled to expire at the end of this year. The bill would push the expiration date to January 1, 2025.
CWCI noted in a research paper that some parts of AB 1751 would conflict with SB 1127, which would reduce to 75 days from 90 days the time employers have to accept liability for claims for certain injuries already presumed to be compensable.
“If, as expected, AB 1751 becomes effective, the investigation period for COVID-19 claims in sections 3212.87 (30 days) and 3212.88 (45 days) would be in direct conflict with the amended language … currently included in SB 1127,” the CWCI said.
The Senate Appropriations Committee will hear AB 1751 on August 8. The Assembly Appropriations Committee is scheduled to hear testimony on SB 1127 on August 3.
The tax committees have until August 12 to adopt bills and legislators have until August 25 to introduce changes. The California Legislature adjourns on August 31st.
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