Posted on May 19, 2014
Kansas employers with workers compensation insurance coverage will appreciate that workers' comp rates in the state are going down in 2012. Although the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) proposed a 1.7% increase for base rates and a 5.3% increase for assigned risk rates, Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger refused to raise the workers compensation rates.
She based her decision on recent changes made to the Kansas Workers Compensation Act. The legislative change signed into law by the Governor provides significant reform including:
· Increased threshold of claims in order for them to be compensable - change will impact payment of unnecessary claims.
· Overturned several court decisions that legislature felt eroded intent of workers compensation law.
· Credits employers for employee's preexisting conditions so that employer only pays for portion of injury that occurs during time employee working for him/her.
· Increased benefits for workers who can no longer work.
· Changed requirement of employer provided doctor alternatives from three to two.
The ultimate result of the Insurance Commissioner's actions is that the NCCI lowered the base rates by half a percent and the assigned risk rates by 3 percent. Base rates are used by all insurance companies while assigned risk premiums are for those businesses that must purchase coverage from the state's assigned risk pool due to being unable to obtain insurance from private carriers. All workers compensation insurance rate changes went into effect on January 1st 2012.