MRI Provider Convicted On All 12 Counts In Kickback Scheme

A federal jury says Sam Sarkis Solakyan is guilty of engaging in an illegal kickback scheme that paid out nearly $9 million for referrals of workers’ comp claimants to his chain of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) centers. The scheme allegedly racked up over $284 million in illegal charges to carriers. The eight-day trial ended with … Read More »

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Trial Starting In MRI Provider’s Kickback Case

Federal prosecutors were scheduled to start making their case yesterday that Sam Sarkis Solakyan engaged in a major kickback scheme to direct referrals of workers’ comp claimants to his chain of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) centers in exchange for cash payments. The scheme is alleged to have racked up $284 million in charges related to … Read More »

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CDI Hearing Officer Recommended COVID-19 Surcharge

Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara bucked both the insurance industry and his own Department in rejecting a plan for California’s already stressed insured employers to pay more in workers’ comp premium next year to cover COVID-19 related workers’ comp claims. California workers’ compensation remains quite profitable for carriers. COVID claims make up only 9% of the … Read More »

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Indicted Providers: 10 Times More Claims Than Honest Docs

California’s extensive anti-fraud efforts have had an impact on the state’s workers’ comp costs, but the true impact is just now coming into focus. New industry claim data linking indicted providers to the medical bills they generated show that they were generating ten times the claims and rendering nearly twice the amount of services per … Read More »

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UR Reforms, Drug Formulary Boost Treatment Approvals

Recent reforms that established a prescription drug formulary for California’s workers’ comp system, and which created a utilization review exemption for many treatments rendered during the first 30 days of an injury, are boosting treatment approval rates for injured workers. A new study using industry claims data indicates that additional reforms could decrease the number … Read More »

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Commissioner Lara Faces First Test On Workers’ Comp Rates

California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara is in the midst of his first review of the industry’s annual workers’ comp rate filing.  He is facing a tough decision: go with the conservative recommendation of the insurance industry or the deeper cut recommended by the independent actuary representing employers and organized labor. The former could have employers … Read More »

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Baker Reforms To Beget Another Rate Cut For 2020

The governing committee members’ of the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau will meet this morning to consider 2020 rates. The result will likely be a recommendation for a low- to mid-single-digit cut to the workers’ comp pure premium rates for 2020 policies. Driving the cut are more of the same trends that have seen rates … Read More »

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Industry Fretting Future of Workers’ Comp

The major data analytics in California’s workers’ comp system continue to show improvement thanks to the resilience of the Baker Reforms, but industry insiders are anything but complacent. A new administration, a new Insurance Commissioner and a labor-backed Democratic supermajority in the Legislature are all contributing to an underlying sense of unease. “There’s a restlessness … Read More »

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