The WCB Act in Alberta is changing! The WCB Act in Alberta is changing! Make note–they are major!
As of January 1, 2018 the Alberta Price Index will no longer be reduced by 0.5% for claims. Calculations will now be based on the actual Consumer Price Index or CPI without any reductions.
As of April 1, 2018 the WCB legislation will include amendments that expand presumptive causation and extend it to those most at risk for psychological injuries and/or post traumatic injury claims like paramedics, correctional officers and emergency dispatchers. Presumptive causation will be expanded to all workers for traumatic psychological injury claims for workers which will now be compensable.
In September 1, 2018 a code of rights and conduct will be established for claimants and the WCB employees, the process for establishing earning capacity will also be amended. Since many injured workers suffered financially while waiting for their WCB claims to be processed–interim relief will be provided during the claims process-which can be complex and long. The WCB amendments will establish employers obligations to reinstate injured workers–whether they are injured physically or psychologically. Enhanced benefits will also be provided to severely injured workers as well as enhanced benefits for survivors like spouses. The window for appeals will also be extended to two years and the cap for insurable earnings will be removed.
In December 1, 2018 a fair practice office will be established to deal with WCB concerns. So with the amendments to the Act in Alberta in 2018, the changes to the OH&S auditing processes in 2018 and the implementation of WHMIS 2015 in December 1, 2018–this is a banner year for change!