WCB Service Updates
Benefit payments and return-to-work management are continuing.
The COVID-19 pandemic will not impact our ability to pay worker benefits. We have transitioned our organization to work remotely, including all ongoing payments. And although it means delivering services differently, we’re still here to support workers as they return-to-work.
Our facilities are open for PMI assessments by appointment only, but remain closed for daily public access. All other in-person services remain postponed.
Following the advice of public health officials, most WCB employees are working remotely and our facilities are closed to the public. In-person meetings and case conferences, and lobby services are postponed, until further notice. Services are continuing wherever possible, enabled by technology. PMI assessments in Halifax and Sydney will resume on July 2 by appointment only.
Sign up for online channels and direct deposit.
Most workers receive their benefits by direct deposit. If you’re not yet registered, we encourage you to do so now.
Although we can’t provide services in person right now, we want to help you from a distance. Your case worker will be able to connect with you remotely, either by phone or secure message in WCB Online. Similarly, please stay connected with your employer, and your health services provider.
Every claim is different, including claims related to COVID-19.
As with any claim received, WCB Nova Scotia will adjudicate claims related to COVID-19 on a case-by-case basis. As set out in the Workers’ Compensation Act, compensation is only available for a work-related injury or illness. It is not provided for workers who cannot work for preventative or precautionary reasons, such as self-isolation or quarantine. Learn more.
Health services may be delivered differently during this time.
Following direction from public health officials, many businesses that were required to close were allowed to reopen on June 5. In these cases, protecting the health of the worker, and the service provider, is of paramount importance.
In these cases, protecting the health of the worker, and the service provider, is of paramount importance. Click here to read more about health services treatments during the COVID-19 pandemic, and if you have concerns or questions about your treatments, please contact your case worker.
I’m cleared to return to work, but no work is available because of the pandemic. Will my benefits continue?
It’s important to talk to your case worker about these details as every claim is different. In general, the Workers’ Compensation Act provides benefits for earnings loss due to a workplace injury or illness. Other programs have been put in place by the federal and provincial government to support income loss as a result of work not being available due to the pandemic.
I was participating in a return-to-work program that included transitional duties, as I’m not clear for full duties, but those transitional duties are no longer available due to the pandemic. Will my benefits continue?
Again, it’s important to talk to your case worker. We want to support your continued return-to-work as much as possible. Every return-to-work plan is different, and we are committed to working with you, your health care provider, and your employer to continue progress to return-to-work wherever possible. Depending on the status of your return-to-work plan, earnings loss benefits may continue to be payable.
I got hurt working from home. Can I file a claim?
Yes, you can still file a claim. The Act exists to cover earnings loss from injuries and illnesses arising out of the course of employment. Your claim will be adjudicated, and a decision made as to the compensability of your injury.
If I contract COVID-19 from a health services provider who I’m seeing because of a compensable injury or illness, will that be another claim?
It’s possible. In general, if a worker is injured or contracts an illness in the course of treatment for a workplace injury or illness, that secondary injury may be compensable. It’s important to discuss the details with your case worker.
I was working transitional duties as part of a return-to-work plan, but now someone I work with might have COVID-19, and I don’t want to work. What happens to my benefits?
It’s important to talk to your employer, and your case worker if applicable, about this. In general, workers’ compensation exists to support earnings loss due to workplace injury or illness. We hope that both you and your employer would respect and apply directives from public health officials and the government regarding COVID -19. We would be happy to discuss this further with both you and your employer so that you can resume appropriate duties, while respecting applicable safety measures.
Workplace Prevention Resources for COVID-19
During these unprecedented times, it’s more important than ever that employers and workers work together to ensure safe workplaces, wherever they may be, and to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Together with our safety partners throughout the province, WCB Nova Scotia has developed a dedicated resource hub to help employers and workers prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Visit worksafeforlife.ca/COVID19 for materials and resources to help work through COVID-19 safely, including our social marketing campaign developed in partnership with the Nova Scotia Department of Labour and Advanced Education.