News Digest 11-18-2019

Quote of the day

“The Department’s actuarial staff appreciates the balance that the WCIRB is trying to achieve in giving some consideration to the more recent trend indications, while recognizing the inherent volatility of severities at early evaluations, the long term medical severity growth rates, the long period over which the medical payments are made, and the high level of increase in average medical severities during the historical post-reform periods. However, while we identify with the need to avoid missing the ‘turning point’ when past high rates of medical inflation may return, we note that there are differences between the current environment and some of the historical post-reform environments that require consideration.”

California Insurance Department report

Workers’ Comp Executive



Flash: Deep Cut in 2020 Pure Premium Rates

The 2020 pure premium rate decision is in and it is good news for California employers. What’s the final rate and why did the California Department of Insurance go deeper than the industry wanted? Get the details here. Workers’ Comp Executive


Thursday morning most dangerous for Montana workers, report finds

Thursday mornings were the most dangerous time on the job for Montana workers in 2018, according to a new report from the state Department of Labor and Industry. The industries with the highest rates of injures were manufacturing, transportation and warehousing, construction and healthcare and social assistance. ABC Fox Montana


Increasing Florida hospital, surgical center fees cited among workers’ comp concerns

The Workers Compensation Research Institute is warning that despite a sustained decline in workers’ compensation rates for Florida employers, a series of 2015 fee revisions are driving up medical fees for hospital outpatient/inpatient and ambulatory surgery center services. In 2015, the state lowered its Medicare Resource-Based Relative Value Scale fees for hospital outpatient and inpatient, ambulatory surgery center and non-hospital professional services. CenterSquare


Families of cancer-stricken firefighters must fight for workers’ comp

Some fire service professionals contend cancer is now responsible for more line-of-duty deaths than all other causes combined because of the increased toxicity of today’s fires. A 2015 study found firefighters are twice as likely to suffer from testicular cancer and malignant mesothelioma. But the workers’ compensation system in many states is stacked against their cancer claims. Valliant News


Federal appeals court allows recovery under employer’s motor vehicle policy

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has vacated a federal district court judgment and held that the district court had improperly found that a workers’ compensation exclusion in a motor vehicle policy bars coverage to a permissive third-party user of an insured vehicle who causes injury to an employee of the insured. The appeals court held the district court erred in applying the exclusion because West Virginia law allows an employee to file suit arising out of a work-related injury where the injury is caused either entirely or by the negligence of a third-party. National Law Review