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CMS releases new WCMSA reference guide (Version 3.1)

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has just released its latest version of the WCMSA reference guide version 3.1 (May 11, 2020). From our review, the only change made by CMS relates to the CDC life table link summarized below.

CDC life table link updated (Section 10.3)

The updated guide provides a new link to the current CDC life table (2017) CMS has been using as of April 25, 2020, to calculate an injured worker’s life expectancy for Workers’ Compensation Medicare Set-Asides (WCMSAs). This change may cause minor differences (usually a tenth to a few tenths of a point) to the estimated life expectancy of an individual and should not result in significantly higher or lower WCMSA approvals. 


If you have questions or would like more information, please feel free to e-mail the author at

Sid Wong, J.D.

Sid Wong is vice president of policy, Casualty Solutions at Verisk. You can contact Sid at

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