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Most Recent Workers Comp News

Growing earnings, workforce pushed comp costs up 6.9% in 2012: Report

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 26, 2014 - 12:37pm CST

Workers compensation costs paid by employers rose 6.9% to $83.2 billion year-over-year in 2012, driven largely by an increase in worker numbers and earnings.

NCCI proposes 2.5% workers comp rate decrease for Florida in 2015

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 26, 2014 - 12:25pm CST

The National Council on Compensation Insurance Inc. has proposed a statewide workers compensation rate decrease in Florida for the first time in four years, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation said.

Global reinsurers' underwriting profits down in first half of 2014: Fitch

By: Sarah Veysey

Published August 26, 2014 - 9:35am CST

The underwriting profits posted by global reinsurers fell in the first half of 2014 compared with the first six months of 2013, although the sector remained profitable.

U.S. property/casualty reinsurer net premiums double in 2014 first half: RAA

By: Matthew Lerner

Published August 25, 2014 - 3:44pm CST

A survey of 18 U.S. property/casualty reinsurers by the Reinsurance Association of America showed net written premiums among the group more than doubled to $28.4 billion.

CMS to launch Medicare set-aside calculator for prescription drug costs

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 25, 2014 - 12:43pm CST

Online tool would allow workers compensation claim payers to determine how much money should be allocated for prescription drugs in Medicare set-aside accounts.

Court upholds judgment against Union Pacific in railroad worker's death

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 22, 2014 - 12:09pm CST

The Texas Court of Appeals has affirmed a $1.2 million judgment awarded to the family of a railroad employee who died from complications after being injured on the job.

U.S. to tighten restrictions on common opioid painkillers

Published August 22, 2014 - 8:46am CST

(Reuters) — The U.S. government is tightening restrictions on hydrocodone, an opioid painkiller contained in Vicodin and other addictive drugs.

California comp rating bureau recommends 6.7% rate hike

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 20, 2014 - 12:05pm CST

The Workers' Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California is recommending that the California Department of Insurance adopt a 6.7% increase in the state's pure premium workers compensation rate.

IN FOCUS Video: Hot Weather Worker Safety

Published August 19, 2014 - 4:45pm CST

A look into heat-related worker safety issues and precautions companies can take to reduce the risk of illnesses and fatalities associated with working outside during hot summer months.

DEA reclassifies painkiller tramadol as a controlled substance

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 18, 2014 - 3:49pm CST

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration began labeling tramadol, an opioid pain medication, as a Schedule IV controlled substance on Monday, according to a final rule published in the Federal Register.

Oklahoma firms consider private coverage in wake of landmark workers comp law

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

At least seven Oklahoma employers have opted out of the state's workers comp system since a new law went into effect, and more are considering the move to private coverage allowed under the landmark legislation.

Easing concerns about returning to work gets employees back on the job sooner

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

LAS VEGAS — Employees' expectations and fears about returning to work better predict how long they'll be out of work than other factors, including a clinical diagnosis.

COMMENTARY: Robin Williams’ death shines light on depression

By: Gavin Souter

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

The death of actor Robin Williams, who authorities say committed suicide, tragically brings into focus a daily issue for many people: depression. Mr. Williams, who reportedly took his own life after suffering from severe depression, was one of millions of people in the U.S. dealing with the disorder.

NFL concussion settlement funds will come from insurers and higher ticket prices

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

The National Football League's financial settlement of former players' concussion-related litigation likely will be paid with a combination of insurer funds and higher prices for game tickets and media rights.

Oklahoma’s new administrative system cuts number of disputed workers comp cases

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

As part of a new law that allows certain Oklahoma employers to opt out of the state's workers compensation system, a three-member Workers' Compensation Commission has been established as has an administrative dispute resolution process.

Work-from-home policies for disabled employees need review after EEOC ruling

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

In the wake of a federal court ruling that telecommuting is a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disability Act, experts say employers should evaluate their work-from-home policies to determine how to handle disabled workers' requests.

Rules for providing equipment to employees who work from home still unclear

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

Employers who allow telecommuting as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act may be required to provide some equipment for an employee's home office, but there are no clear-cut rules regarding what an employer must provide, said Linda Batiste, principal consultant with the Job Accommodation Network in Morgantown, West Virginia.

Updated veteran hiring rules create challenges for federal contractors

By: Bill Kenealy

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

Federal contractors face more scrutiny — and fines — for the way they search for and hire veterans because of a final U.S. Department of Labor rule that went into effect in March.

Return-to-work policies for workers with mental illness require sensitivity

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

Return-to-work policies for employees with mental illness such as depression or anxiety should include flexible scheduling and communication with employees to understand accommodations they need while recovering from such conditions.

Compliance needs drive employer interest in integration of benefits programs

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

To ensure compliance with federal and state laws and company policies, employers of all sizes are becoming more interested in integrating their leave, disability and workers compensation programs.

Pacific Gas & Electric aims for total absence management approach

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 17, 2014 - 6:00am CST

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. plans to implement a program to coordinate all of its time-off policies, including vacation, sick leave, workers compensation and short- and long-term disability, said Bryon Bass, its San Francisco-based director of integrated disability management in workforce health.

State judge rules Florida Workers' Compensation Act unconstitutional

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 15, 2014 - 3:20pm CST

The Florida Workers' Compensation Act no longer provides adequate benefits to injured workers and is therefore unconstitutional, a Miami-Dade County, Florida, judge has ruled.

Health reform law effects will trickle down to workers comp: Doctor

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 15, 2014 - 1:16pm CST

LAS VEGAS — The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act makes little mention of workers compensation, but the law will indirectly affect workers comp systems nationwide in both negative and positive ways.

California workers comp premium rate expected to jump 6.7% in 2015

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 14, 2014 - 4:24pm CST

The California Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau is set to recommend a 6.7% increase in the state’s pure premium workers compensation rate next year, the bureau said Wednesday.

OFF BEAT: Wannabe pageant queen takes runway walk to fraud charges

Published August 14, 2014 - 12:31pm CST

Though style will always trump comfort for beauty pageant contestants, a pair of shoes got one beauty queen in trouble with the law.