Like other states, Colorado has seen numerous legislative attempts to make it easier for first responders to claim workers’ comp for PTSD. Pinnacol helped defeat those previous bills, each of which had unique problems. However, the issue was gaining traction on both sides of the aisle; it was not going away. Taking on the role of constructive problem-solver, Pinnacol worked with the Fraternal Order of Police and self-insured municipalities to craft a compromise that focuses on the type of exposure — rather than the type of profession — that qualifies for a PTSD claim. This unique approach eliminates the “slippery slope” problems inherent in profession-specific carve-outs while still allowing only a very narrow window for PTSD claims, thereby ensuring that the vast majority of employers will not face such claims. The bill, HB 17-1229, passed both chambers with strong bipartisan support and is now on its way to the governor’s desk.
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