There is always pressure to reduce costs in California’s workers’ compensation system. Whether it is for businesses, employees or those who work within the system (i.e. investigators, outside attorneys, medical providers) groups are always vying to save money on costs.
The state’s Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau proposed a reduction in insurance premiums that employers would pay, which could result in cost savings to employers if approved by the commissioner.
The Bureau based its proposal on lower than expected indemnity and medical severities along with lower medical loss developments. If passed, employers could see a 10 percent reduction compared to the current industry average for premiums. It is currently $2.57 per $100 in payroll. The proposed changes would be $2.30 per $100.
The proposal is ostensibly a result of the changes made by S.B. 863, which legislators passed three years ago to increase benefits to injured workers and reduce overall system costs. The new legislation called for changes to fee schedules for home health care, a streamlined process for billing disputes and changes to lien filings.
It does not appear that the rate changes will have any effect on the administration of workers’ comp claims. So injured workers should not be concerned about bringing new claims if they are injured while on the job. After all, when employers can reduce operating costs, they are more likely to contribute properly to the system and are less likely to dispute claims.
If you have questions about advancing a work comp claim, a workers’ compensation lawyer can advise you.