Workers’ Comp Premium Assessments on the Rise

Employers have no control over the assessments, but they do have control over their final work comp premium. Visit www.correctcomp.com to learn all of the little known secrets.

The Department of Industrial Relations has completed its annual review of the workers’ comp premium assessment rates and to no one’s surprise employers will be paying more in 2010. Much of the increase is due to a new user assessment that will complete the move of all of DIR’s operations over to user funding — a change that is intended to remove its operations from the political machinations of the budget setting process.

The assessments cover the operational costs of the Division of Workers’ Compensation and Cal-OSHA. The fees also go to pay for the care of injured workers whose employers failed to have coverage and the cost of finding workers’ comp cheats. Overall, the 2010 the assessment rates are set at:

Fund Assessment Rate for Carriers Assessment Rate for Self-Insured Employers
Workers’ Comp Administration Revolving Fund 0.015166 0.027736
Workers’ Comp Fraud Account Assessment 0.003986 0.006057
Occupational Safety & Health Fund 0.003064 0.009488
Labor Enforcement & Compliance Fund 0.001924 0.005946
Uninsured Employers Benefit Trust Fund 0.001849 0.002345
Subsequent Injuries Benefit Trust Fund 0.001050 0.001414

Source: California Workers’ Compensation Institute

The new assessment for 2010 is the Labor Enforcement & Compliance Fund, which will support the operations of the Division of Labor Standards and Enforcement. Previously, these costs were covered by the state’s general fund. This year’s budget act, however, did provide for some future predictability in the assessment rates. The budget deal set a three year cap on funding for Cal-OSHA and DLSE at 2010 levels that will run through 2013.

The DIR is expected to begin mailing notices and invoices to carriers and self-insured employers next week. An initial installment is due by January 1, 2010, with the full balance paid by April 1, 2010.

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