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2013 California workers comp reforms will define market for years to come

By: Bill Kenealy

Published September 14, 2014 - 6:00am CST

DANA POINT, Calif. — Legislative actions at the state and federal level will continue to define the California workers compensation market for years to come, according to experts monitoring the effect of recent workers comp reforms in the state.

Minn. company charged with requesting too much employee medical information

By: Judy Greenwald

Published September 09, 2014 - 3:03pm CST

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on Tuesday charged a power generation equipment company with violating the Americans with Disabilities Act by requiring an employee to submit overly broad medical release forms.

Aon Hewitt adding voluntary benefit options to private health exchange

By: Matt Dunning

Published August 28, 2014 - 9:57am CST

Aon Hewitt on Thursday said it is planning to add voluntary benefit plans to the menu of coverages available through its private health insurance exchange, largely due to rising employer demand for a wider variety of exchange-based benefit options.

EMT's disability lawsuit over counseling for affair reinstated on appeal

By: Judy Greenwald

Published August 20, 2014 - 2:17pm CST

A former emergency medical technician who was fired after she refused psychological counseling that was required by a supervisor concerned about her “immoral” sexual conduct.

Fired cop's award overturned because ADHD not severe, says court

By: Judy Greenwald

Published August 19, 2014 - 12:33pm CST

A terminated police officer who was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder was not sufficiently impaired to be protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act, said an appeals court.

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.

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.

'Doing more with less' leads to disability management outsourcing: Broadspire CEO

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 13, 2014 - 2:27pm CST

LAS VEGAS — Outsourcing disability and absence management to third parties will become more popular as employers continue feeling pressure to “do more with less,” Broadspire Services Inc. CEO Danielle Lisenbey said Wednesday.

Broadspire offers employers leave-management outsourcing

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 12, 2014 - 2:48pm CST

Third-party administrator Broadspire Services Inc. is launching a suite of integrated disability and absence management services this fall for employers looking to outsource their leave management.

Departmental competition challenges absence and disability management: Speakers

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 11, 2014 - 3:28pm CST

LAS VEGAS — The biggest obstacle to holistically managing absence and disability for many employers is getting different departments to coordinate with each other, speakers said Monday at the Disability Management Employer Coalition's 19th annual conference in Las Vegas.

Miner due Black Lung benefits despite smoking history: Court

By: Sheena Harrison

Published August 08, 2014 - 1:54pm CST

A former coal mine worker with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease should receive benefits under the federal Black Lung Benefits Act despite his nearly 40-year history of cigarette smoking.

Calif. high court denies home health worker who sued Alzheimer's patient

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published August 05, 2014 - 11:06am CST

A home health care worker injured by a patient with Alzheimer's disease is limited to workers compensation benefits, as patients with Alzheimer's aren't liable for injuring caregivers.

Unum reports 10.9% profit increase for 2nd quarter

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published July 31, 2014 - 12:11pm CST

Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Unum Group is reporting a second quarter net income of $242.5 million, up 10.9% from $218.6 million in the same period last year, the insurer said in its earnings statement Wednesday.

EEOC sues employer for demanding health care details for worker absences

By: Judy Greenwald

Published July 28, 2014 - 2:03pm CST

The EEOC has filed suit against a construction equipment supplier, charging that it violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by improperly demanding disability-related information from its workers.

Pleading the Fifth on immigration status no bar to workers comp benefits in Pa.

By: Sheena Harrison

Published July 23, 2014 - 1:00pm CST

A Pennsylvania employer should not have stopped payment of workers compensation benefits to an employee who declined to testify about his immigration status during a hearing, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled.

Judge wants grocery chain held in contempt for ignoring disability bias decree

By: Judy Greenwald

Published July 17, 2014 - 1:14pm CST

A judge has recommended that the Supervalu Inc. supermarket chain be held in contempt of court and sanctioned for violating a court decree entered to resolve an Americans with Disabilities Act lawsuit against the firm.

BROKER BEAT: Bankers Insurance L.L.C.

Published July 15, 2014 - 6:00am CST

Business Insurance Senior Editor Rodd Zolkos speaks with Mike Hedden, senior vice president and director of operations for Bankers Insurance L.L.C., about issues currently affecting the bank-owned agency and brokerage firm.

Travelers sues NFL, insurers over former players' prescription drug lawsuit

By: Sheena Harrison

Published July 14, 2014 - 12:11pm CST

Travelers Cos. Inc. is suing the National Football League and more than two dozen other insurers in New York state court, saying it has no obligation to defend the NFL in a prescription drug-related lawsuit filed by more than 500 former players.

WTC cleanup workers may renew health claims: U.S. appeals court

Published July 10, 2014 - 3:29pm CST

(Reuters) — A federal appeals court in New York has revived claims by 211 cleanup workers who sought compensation for their alleged exposure to toxic contaminants in buildings near the World Trade Center site after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Employee targeted for murder by co-worker's husband due comp benefits for PTSD

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published July 08, 2014 - 11:24am CST

A supermarket employee is entitled to workers compensation benefits for post-traumatic stress disorder that was exacerbated as a result of being targeted for murder by a co-worker's husband.

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