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The Ohio House of Representatives passed the state’s 2020-2021 workers compensation budget in a 55-38 vote Thursday in a battle over whether a provision in the bill would make it difficult for illegal workers to file claims for workers compensation.
H.B. 80, which will now move to the state’s Senate for consideration, stipulates that injured workers can only file for workers compensation if they truthfully acknowledge whether they are a citizen, authorized worker or an illegal or unauthorized worker. The legislation states that claimants who provide false information are ineligible to receive workers comp or benefits and will be subject to prosecution for violation of Ohio statutes.
Policy Matters Ohio, a nonprofit policy research institute based in Columbus, Ohio, said in a news release that the amendment “creates an incentive for unscrupulous operators to seek out undocumented workers, then cut corners on safety.”
A bill does offer workers comp protections for post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by first responders in the course of their employment, as well as psychiatric conditions arising from an occupational injury or disease caused by a forcible sexual encounter.
The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation approved a 20% reduction in the average premium rate it collects from private employers in the state, representing the bureau’s largest reduction in nearly 60 years.