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Iowa’s proposed workers compensation rates will decrease by 8.7% beginning Jan. 1, 2018, the office of the Gov. Kim Reynolds said Wednesday in a statement.
The proposed decreases are a result of the workers comp reform bill House File 518, which was passed during the 2017 legislative session. Under House File 518, attorneys can’t take fees from injured workers when an employer is voluntarily giving benefits. House File 518 originally proposed to limit benefits to older workers, but that language was removed in the final version.
“Over the past decade, Iowa’s workers compensation system has mutated into one that benefits trial lawyers at the expense of businesses and workers,” Ms. Reynolds said in the statement. “Workers compensation reform rebalanced the scale to ensure employees are compensated fairly for being injured on the job while ensuring abuses are curtailed.”
Study bills introduced Monday in the Iowa Legislature would reform a number of provisions in the state’s workers compensation system, including limiting benefits for permanently disabled older workers and blocking comp benefits for workers who were intoxicated at the time of an injury.