As a response to the current coronavirus pandemic, the Minnesota legislature has stepped up and enacted a law which affords protection to various groups of individuals who are working on the front lines of the pandemic. This was bipartisan legislation, supported by Governor Walz, which recognizes that the people who provide our health and childcare are putting themselves at risk and should be offered reliable protection.
Essentially, the new law states that certain workers who contract COVID-19 are presumed to have contracted the disease in the course and scope of their employment, thereby entitling them to workers’ compensation coverage for wage loss and medical bills.
Who Is Covered?
The presumption and coverage applies to employees working in the following occupations:
- Licensed peace officers, firefighters, paramedics or emergency medical technicians;
- Nurses, healthcare workers, correctional officers or security counselors employed by the State or other level of government at a corrections, detention or secure treatment facility;
- Health care providers, nurses or assistive employees employed in health care, home care or long-term care setting with exposure to COVID-19 patients;
- Persons required to provide childcare to first responders and healthcare workers under the recent executive orders signed by Governor Walz.
What About Other Workers Who Contract Covid-19? Are They Covered?
The employees listed above are presumed to have contracted COVID-19 as a result of their work activities and are thereby covered by workers’ compensation. Others who contract the disease in the course and scope of their employment would still be eligible to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits but the degree of proof required would be different. This law simply makes it easier for certain people to quickly establish and receive work comp benefits based upon the hazardous nature of their jobs.
Where Can I Find More Information About This Law?
You can find a summary of the bill and frequently asked questions (FAQs) at the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry website by clicking on this link.
Thank you for visiting our website and we extend our best wishes that you and yours are remaining safe and healthy throughout this difficult time.