Archive | October, 2012

When A Work Related Injury Occurs

25 Oct

Once the injured worker is stabilized and sent to an MPN (Medical Provider Network) doctor, immediately call your Insurance Company to report the injury.
There are two key steps that must be followed once the injury is reported and treatment initiated.
You must provide the injured worker with the Employee Claim Form (DWC-1) within 24 hours of being notified of the injury. You must also provide the Medical Provider Network Notice (MPN Notice For Employees) within 24 hours of claim notification to the injured worker. MPN Notice For Employees
Employers with 11 or more employees, except those industries classified as retail, service, finance and real estate are required to track records of work related injuries using the Cal/Osha Form 300.
Almost all injured workers can return to work the next day after an injury and do some type of activity. The difference to you as an employer is claims costs is tremendous. The average cost of a workers’ compensation claim, IF the worker comes back the next day is about $700. IF THE WORKER DOES NOT RETURN THE NEXT DAY COSTS AN AVERAGE OF $11,000!

How To Cope With a Rising Cost Workers’ Compensation Inurance Market?

8 Oct

1. It all starts with an effective safety plan. A plan is required by Cal/OSHA, helps prevent injuries and serves as guide for the whole process.
2. Get injured workers back on the job the very next day after an injury. The latest WCIRB tells us the average total cost of a lost time injury now is $70,179. You can get almost every injured person back to work doing something productive. Can you afford the impact on your experience modification and your claims history of doing nothing?
3. Conduct a thorough accident investigation.. In the past week alone, in two investigations, I learned that one injury did not occur on the job, and the second injury was a re-injury from 5 years ago (when this employee did not work for us – and any permanent disability needs to be properly apportioned to the prior employer and old claim.)
4. Now we have better rules to work with, use the Medical Provider Network to gain “life of claim” medical control. One part of the reform limits the ability of chiropractors to be “treating physicians” and giving medical opinions after their limited course of treatment is over.
5. There will be more tools for you from this reform. Stay tuned!
Helping you save money on workers’ compensation claims and keep or obtain a low experience modification is what I do for you. Just as important is compliance with OSHA recordkeeping, reporting and safety standards. Call me for a FREE, no obligation conference.
Don Dressler: Ph.: 949-533-2742; E-mail:; Websites: and

California Insurance Market Driving Up Workers’ Compensation Rates

5 Oct

Workers’ Comp. insurers continue to face losses on their California lines of business. The very latest official reports for all insurers doing business in California, for results through March 31, 2012, report the third consecutive “accident year” of a “combined loss and expense ratio of over 130% for California workers’ compensation.
• 2008-117%
• 2009-137%
• 2010-137%
• 2011-136%
(Source: WCIRB Report on March 31, 2012 Insurer Experience, Released September 4, 2012)
These losses are driving insurance companies to raise premiums, tighten underwriting and decline to quote or even non-renew policies.
For that reason, employers are seeing premium rate increases of from 10% to 30% on renewal of their workers’ compensation insurance policies in the last three (3) months of 2012 and after January 1, 2013.
Employers should not feel optimistic about to the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau (WCIRB) vote on September 26, 2012 to file for NO increase on January 1, 2013, in the “Pure Premium Rates. This action by the WCIRB Governing Board was not supported by the actuarial data before the Board, which calls for a 9.3% increase – giving credit for savings due to the just passed reform laws by dropping the proposal from the original 12.6% increase proposal. The WCIRB Board stated it acted “in the spirit to tighten things up and make it better for employers in California.”
Many insurers have already filed rates for increases in October and November 2012, not waiting for either the WCIRB or the California Insurance Commissioner. Most of these rate filings are from 8.2% to 14% with some as high as 27.3%. The rate filings match the increases in quotes seen by insurance agents for renewals for their clients.
Even the recent announcement by the CA State Fund of a rate cut of 7% will not benefit policy holders with a renewal date of January 1, 213.

New CA Workers’ Compensation Law: SB 863, Saves Employers Money and Helps Injured Workers

1 Oct

The California Legislature passed and Governor Brown signed the most significant workers’ compensation benefit increase and reform package since the 2004 reform legislation sponsored by then Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. SB 863, which takes effect January 1, 2013, was strongly supported by employers, unions and the Governor’s office, over the objections of attorneys and many workers’ compensation medical providers. It is anticipated that the legislation will provide a net decrease in total system costs to California employers of $872 million in 2013 and an additional savings of $292 million in 2014, even after providing increased benefits to injured workers of $310 million in 2013 and $530 million in 2014.

This new law increases permanent partial disability benefits phased in during 2013 and 2014 offset by a series of reforms that are intended to provide result in reduction of litigation costs and hopefully increased predictability in system costs. The reforms include more reliable medical control by employers, if they use the “Medical Provider Network” process available to them.