Workers Comp Class Code 8871 Clerical Telecommuter Employees
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a lot of attention to Class Code 8871 - Clerical Telecommuter Employees.
Many of the employees who transitioned from the office to telecommuting have returned or will return to the office. However, having demonstrated flexibility and success, a large percentage will continue to telecommute beyond the pandemic due to numerous reason including lifestyle, cost savings, etc.
Why Is The 8871 Clerical Telecommuter Classification Confusing?
Much of the Office and Clerical industry group is comprised of the clerical office employees class code (Code 8810) with a smaller portion accounted for by its telecommuting counterpart; the clerical telecommuting employees class code (Code 8871).
So, why is the 8871 class code causing confusion?
There are a number of reasons.
First, the description for work comp code 8871 includes "telecommuter" which stands out to employers. However, class code 8871 is for telecommuting clerical workers. And, a lot of the new telecommuters are not necessarily clerical office workers. The work they are performing isn't classified as clerical.
Second, many workers comp class codes include clerical workers in their descriptions. This issue is also discussed on our Class Code 8810 page. Businesses classified as class code 9012 Building Or Property Management, class code 8723 Insurance Companies, class code 8832 Physician, etc. have proper descriptions that contain clerical office employees. So, if an employee is not classified as class code 8810 when working in the office, she wouldn't be classified as a clerical office employee while telecommuting either. So, no class code 8871.
Third, job duties could change requiring a change of work comp class codes to 8871 Clerical Telecommuter. NCCI gives one of numerous examples of how this could happen through changes in job duties on their website: "a traveling accountant (Code 8803), who is no longer able to travel, may now perform clerical work remotely, and therefore may be reclassified into the clerical telecommuting class code (Class Code 8871)."
NCCI states that half of the clerical office payroll in this country is classified as class code 8810. Most of the other remaining clerical office payroll is accounted for by work comp codes that include clerical work the codes' descriptions. Only a small percentage of the the country's clerical office employees telecommute and fall under work comp class code 8871.
According to NCCI, Clerical office employees accounted for more than 60% of total payroll by industry group in 2018.
Class code 8810 contained 47% of total payroll among clerical work comp classification codes. The difference between clerical office payroll by industry group and payroll classified directly into code 8810 is accounted for by the fact that some of the clerical office employees' payroll is written in class code 8871 Clerical Telecommuting and other classification codes that include clerical work in their description; like class code 8723 Insurance Companies Including Clerical & Salespersons.
Work comp class code 8871 Clerical Telecommuter represents a very small percentage of the work force. It shouldn't cause problems for you when it comes time for your next work comp audit. However, questions about class code 8871 continue to generate a lot of calls and emails.
If you have any questions concerning work comp class codes, telecommuting employees, or any other work comp classification issues, please reach out.
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