- Mesothelioma case goes to Missouri Supreme Court
In a case that was appealed by both the widow of a tile installer who died of complications related to asbestos and the employer and insurer who say a new law was misapplied to the case, the Missouri Court of Appeals is sending the issue to the state’s high court.
- Asset manager acquires majority stake in MedRisk
The Carlyle Group, an alternative asset manager, has agreed to acquire a majority stake in MedRisk Inc., a provider of managed physical medicine solutions to the workers compensation sector.
- OSHA settles with grain company in Kansas fatal explosion
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has settled workplace safety violations with a Missouri-based grain company following six fatalities during a 2011 explosion, with the company agreeing to pay $182,000 in penalties.
- Workplace fatalities down in California
The California Department of Industrial Relations says 376 Californians died on the job in 2016, down slightly from 388 deaths in 2015 but still higher than the most recent low of 344 in 2014.
- Holiday hurry leads to workers comp flurry
The holiday season’s demands on the retail, packing and shipping sectors elevate workers compensation risks, and those who hire seasonal workers or expect their employees to put in overtime are urged to plan wisely.
- OSHA cites Florida company for trench hazards
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Tallahassee, Florida-based R.A.W. Construction for exposing its employees to trench collapse hazards.
- Fatal workplace injuries surge
Fatal work injuries in the United States in 2016 reached their highest level since 2008, with double-digit increases in workplace violence and overdose fatalities, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report.
- Report analyzes workers comp and earthquake risk in California
Losses for a 100-year earthquake in California are expected to exceed $300 million with more than 300 fatalities and a 250-year event may exceed $1.4 billion in losses with more than 1,000 fatalities, according to a report released Monday by the Oakland, California-based Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau.
- Privacy concerns may stall OSHA record-keeping move
- Reversal recognizes OSHA regulation in New York mining citations
A federal appeals court has reversed an Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission decision that upheld an administrative law judge’s vacating of citations issued against an employer by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
- Medical share of N.Y. comp costs drops to 37%: Rating board
The medical share of total workers compensation benefit costs in New York dropped to 37% in 2015 and 2016 from a high of 42% in 2007, while the national average is 51.4%, according to a report released state’s comp rating board.
- OSHA electronic injury and illness data due by Dec. 31
Employers required to comply with the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s electronic record-keeping rule will have until midnight on Dec. 31 to submit their 2016 injury and illness data on the agency’s injury tracking application to avoid any enforcement action by the agency.
- Oregon comp death benefits for children set to increase
Children of deceased workers for all fatal claims in Oregon are set to see an increase in death benefits starting in 2018, the state Workers’ Compensation Division announced Friday.
- Cal/OSHA cites three contractors for Oakland structure collapse
The California Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited three contractors a total of $147,315 in penalties for safety violations after the collapse of a temporary mold and vertical shoring in Oakland hospitalized 13 workers.
- Tennessee high court upholds disability claim
The Supreme Court of Tennessee has upheld a woman’s disability claim despite her employer’s assertion that her impairment rating should be capped after she resigned her position following a workplace injury.
- Michigan comp medical payments lower than most other states: Study
- WHO says element of medical marijuana not dangerous
The World Health Organization has declared cannabidiol, a pain-relieving compound in marijuana known as CBD, neither harmful nor addictive.
- Injury, illness reporting accuracy key as electronic deadline nears
Employers should pay careful attention to their U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration injury and illness logs to ensure they are accurately recording safety incidents, particularly in light of an upcoming deadline for certain employers to electronically submit this information to the agency, legal experts said.
- California regulators commit to quarterly comp drug formulary updates
The California closed drug formulary for workers compensation will be updated quarterly by a committee of three doctors and three pharmacists who will meet several times a year, according to California regulators.
- Oklahoma Workers Comp Commission official to step down
Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Commission Executive Director Kim Bailey will resign effective Dec. 19.
- Study finds 62% of contractors don’t use safety technology
Most construction contractors are not utilizing emerging technology such as drones to improve workplace safety, but change is expected as the benefits of using these technologies are proven, awareness grows and their prices start to decrease, according to a new study.
- Georgia company cited for improper trench protections
U.S. federal workplace safety regulators have cited and proposed $130,552 in fines against a Georgia construction company for failing to protect its employees from trench collapse hazards.
- Trump administration expected to weaken EPA chemical safeguards
The Trump administration is likely to move to repeal all of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s regulatory amendments designed to prevent chemical incidents such as the West, Texas, fertilizer disaster that killed 15 people, according to a legal expert.
- Florida bill to expand PTSD benefits for first responders criticized
A Florida bill that would cover mental health treatment for first responders with post-traumatic stress disorder absent any physical injuries under workers comp moved forward last week, but opponents question its cost.
- N.C. high court clarifies intersection of comp and civil cases
- Ohio men convicted of workers comp fraud
- Workers comp sector leads in insurer financial impairments: Best
The U.S. workers compensation industry experienced more financial impairments during a 17-year period from 2000-2016 than any other property/casualty line of business, according to an A.M. Best special report.
- Missouri regulators recommend comp lost costs decrease for 2018
The Missouri Department of Insurance is recommending a 3% decrease in workers compensation insurance loss costs for 2018, on top of a 4% decrease that took effect on Aug. 1.
- Auto dealership deaths lead to safety citations
OSHA regulators cited and proposed $152,099 in penalties against an Alabama automobile dealership after three employees died and two were injured in a fire.
- Texas lifts post-Harvey workers comp disaster deadlines
- Fired asbestos whistleblower gets award
A whistleblower who reported improper asbestos removal practices at a school worksite has won a $173,794 award after being fired for reporting these practices.
- Court affirms miner’s loss in quest for total disability award
A West Virginia appeals court has affirmed a decision denying a permanent total disability award to an injured worker.
- State high court rules for employer in comp benefits dispute
- Side effect of new pot laws? Low demand for medical marijuana
- Illinois medical payments for comp claims 24% higher than other states
Medical payments per workers compensation claim were 24% higher in Illinois than the median for other states examined in a new study by the Workers Compensation Research Institute.
- California moving forward with comp drug formulary starting Jan. 1
California regulators are proceeding with an evidence-based drug formulary for medical providers treating injured workers starting Jan. 1, 2018.
- Safety efforts in meat, poultry industry face hurdles
- Texas sets 2018 medical fee guideline conversion factors
The Texas Department of Insurance has sets medical fee guideline conversion factors for 2018, based on the Medicare Economic Index, which increased 1.4% for next year.
- Safety advocate to retire
- Los Angeles police union can create comp delivery system
Officers with the Los Angeles Police Protective League will be able to create their own alternatives for workers compensation benefit delivery and dispute resolution under a collective bargaining agreement with the City of Los Angeles.
- ESIS product helps with injured worker advocacy
ESIS has launched its new worker advocacy model, ESIS Care, that aims to eliminate barriers in the workers compensation process for injured workers.
- Roofer’s safety citations affirmed, penalty reduced
- Ohio House passes bill barring comp for undocumented workers
- Top 10 Off Beats from November
- Addition of third commissioner should clear safety review backlog
The Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission is fully staffed for the first time in years with the addition of James Sullivan, and legal experts hope the commission will move quickly to address its case backlog.
- OSHA cites contractor after employee injured in roof fall
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Benco Builders of the Virginias Inc. after an employee suffered serious injuries from a 19-foot fall off a roof.
- Montana’s workplace injury and illness rates decline
Montana’s injury and illness rates declined to an incidence rate of 4.2 injury and illness cases per hundred full-time workers in 2016, according to the state’s annual survey of occupational injuries and illnesses.
- OSHA director nominee faces tough questions at confirmation hearing
Scott Mugno, President Donald Trump’s nominee to head the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, pledged to work with agency staffers to advance its safety mission, including examining ways to improve collaborative programs with employers.
- California regulators suspend 21 more workers comp doctors
- Most commercial insurance rates rise in November
- Closure rates, rising medical costs trouble comp claims managers
More than 50% of workers comp claims officials report a growing claims inventory, finding that closing claims within the first year is becoming more difficult, a survey shows.
- OSHA cites contractor for mercury, respirator hazards
- Boom in post-retirement workers creates unique set of workplace safety needs
Workplace safety experts are keeping an eye out for a potential rise in post-retirement injuries due to the increasing number of retired workers taking on part-time jobs.
- OSHA guides employers on navigating water risks
- A lasting legacy of pain
An industry whose hallmark is pain management is grappling with its own ailment with no easy cure: legacy claims tied to long-term opioid prescriptions.
- High hopes for next OSHA chief
Employers hope that new leadership at OSHA will spur a more collaborative approach to regulation and enforcement.
- Medicare settlements feature lifetime opioid guarantees
- Reasons for returning to work vary
- Mugno would face full docket
- Employer’s liability for black lung benefits upheld
The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld an employer’s liability for black lung benefits to a coal miner it cumulatively employed for more than a year.
- Cleveland convict adds work comp fraud to criminal record
It didn’t take Sherlock Holmes to crack the case — just a crack workers comp claims staff with an acute ear for background noises.
- Workers comp costs to drop for most Washington employers
The average amount Washington state employers pay for workers compensation insurance will drop by 2.5 % in 2018 for most industries, the state Department of Labor & Industries said.
- Florida regulators take over insolvent workers comp insurer
Florida insurance regulators have taken over Guarantee Insurance Co. and have started liquidating its assets, a spokesman for the Department of Financial Services confirmed.
- Express Scripts CEO sees Amazon as a potential partner: CNBC
(Reuters) — Express Scripts sees Amazon.com Inc., which has been reported to be interested in entering the pharmacy market, as a possible partner rather than a competitor, the PBM’s CEO said Thursday on CNBC.
- Medical payments per comp claim down in North Carolina
Medical payments per workers compensation claim in North Carolina decreased 6% per year from 2013 through 2015, according to a study released by the Workers Compensation Research Institute.
- OSHA cites transportation firm for safety hazards
- Telemedicine on the rise: Survey
Three-quarters of medical providers currently offer or plan to offer telemedicine services, according to the results of a recent survey, outstripping expectations.
- Kimberly-Clark must pay death benefits to worker’s widow
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has denied a Kimberly-Clark Corp. petition to appeal a decision awarding death benefits to a widow whose husband’s death was caused by exposure to chemicals in the workplace.
- Pottery maker settles OSHA action after kiln death
- Employers hope OSHA electronic records deadline delay leads to changes
The agency’s decision to extend the deadline once again for employers to electronically submit injury and illness data surprised no one, but stakeholders are hoping this means it will either revamp the rule or provide more clarity.
- New Jersey approves workers comp rate decrease
The New Jersey insurance commissioner has approved a 5.1% rate decrease for workers compensation premiums on a new and renewal basis, the Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau said in a letter to members.
- Former insurance agent to serve time for workers comp scam