www.safetyandhealthmagazine.com/articles/15804-texas-workers-compensation-letters-now-easier-to-read
DWC letter
Photo: Texas Department of Insurance Division of Workers’ Compensation

Texas workers’ compensation letters now easier to read

June 16, 2017

Austin, TX – Shorter words and sentences, clearer headings, and less jargon are among the changes the Texas Department of Insurance Division of Workers’ Compensation has made to its form letters for injured employees.

“Workers’ compensation is complex, and we want to do everything we can to help injured employees get the care and benefits they’re entitled to,” DWC Commissioner Ryan Brannan said in a June 7 press release. “A clearly written letter can help the employee better understand the process.”

DWC analyzed hundreds of various form letters and “started to rebuild them with input from the subject matter experts,” division member Melody May said in the release. For example, once written at a college reading level, the Request for Required Medical Examination letter now reflects a seventh-grade reading level.

Acknowledging that people often skim letters, DWC used new headings so readers easily can see what actions need to be taken, doctor names and appointment times.

The division requires its letters to cover current content, have a format compatible with records processing and contain wording that satisfies legal requirements, May said in the release.