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Assigned Risk Pool- Is it Too Costly For My Company?


The Assigned Risk Pool – Very Expensive Insurance

My Company is in the Assigned Risk Pool.  Are we paying that much extra, and if we are, how do we get out of it ASAP?

Hand Holding Marker Pen Assigned Risk Pool Illustrate Money Cost

We currently have quite a few employer clients who have asked for us to help get them out of the Assigned Risk Pool. The Workers Comp Assigned Risk Pool is where the State chooses a carrier for an employer as there was no coverage for them in the voluntary market. The insurance company must cover the risk. The insurer charges a HUGE rate over the voluntary market. Who could blame them, as this is “take them as you find them” insurance coverage?

A certain state’s advisory Workers Compensation insurance rate for the Administrative/Clerical positions (Classification Code 8810) is 60% higher in the Assigned Risk Pool than in the regular Workers Comp voluntary market. As you can see, you are paying a much higher rate when in the Pool.

Vector graphic of Rate Arrow Assigned Risk Pool Increase

What is the quickest way to get out of the Assigned Risk Pool? This is a much-debated point. The most obvious one is a Safety Program. Keeping losses from happening will do the most for your E-Mod and Workers Comp insurance rates. However, there is a one-year lag between your current safety efforts and the E-Mod you have now. Safety programs do take time to show in your insurance premiums.

Reviewing your loss runs is very important. They need to be reviewed long before your Uni-Stat date and any corrections made. There are quite a few prior posts on reviewing your loss runs. If you at any time feel in over your head in reviewing and/or negotiating reserves with your Work Comp claims adjuster, please call in an expert. These reviews can make or break a Workers Comp program. Do not call the Workers Comp adjuster up and say something like – “My reserves are too high. I am paying too much in premium.” Be specific to what claims are over-reserved in your opinion and why.

The other ones are filing a timely report of injury, referral to a good medical treatment network, having a great return to work program, and employee treatment. These will bring your E-Mod and Workers Comp premiums down quickly.

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James J Moore - Workers Comp Expert

Raleigh, NC, United States

About The Author...

James founded a Workers’ Compensation consulting firm, J&L Risk Management Consultants, Inc. in 1996. J&L’s mission is to reduce our clients’ Workers Compensation premiums by using time-tested techniques. J&L’s claims, premium, reserve and Experience Mod reviews have saved employers over $9.8 million in earned premiums over the last three years. J&L has saved numerous companies from bankruptcy proceedings as a result of insurance overpayments.

James has over 27 years of experience in insurance claims, audit, and underwriting, specializing in Workers’ Compensation. He has supervised, and managed the administration of Workers’ Compensation claims, and underwriting in over 45 states. His professional experience includes being the Director of Risk Management for the North Carolina School Boards Association. He created a very successful Workers’ Compensation Injury Rehabilitation Unit for school personnel.

James’s educational background, which centered on computer technology, culminated in earning a Masters of Business Administration (MBA); an Associate in Claims designation (AIC); and an Associate in Risk Management designation (ARM). He is a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and a licensed financial advisor. The NC Department of Insurance has certified him as an insurance instructor. He also possesses a Bachelors’ Degree in Actuarial Science.

LexisNexis has twice recognized his blog as one of the Top 25 Blogs on Workers’ Compensation. J&L has been listed in AM Best’s Preferred Providers Directory for Insurance Experts – Workers Compensation for over eight years. He recently won the prestigious Baucom Shine Lifetime Achievement Award for his volunteer contributions to the area of risk management and safety. James was recently named as an instructor for the prestigious Insurance Academy.

James is on the Board of Directors and Treasurer of the North Carolina Mid-State Safety Council. He has published two manuals on Workers’ Compensation and three different claims processing manuals. He has also written and has been quoted in numerous articles on reducing Workers’ Compensation costs for public and private employers. James publishes a weekly newsletter with 7,000 readers.

He currently possess press credentials and am invited to various national Workers Compensation conferences as a reporter.

James’s articles or interviews on Workers’ Compensation have appeared in the following publications or websites:

  • Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS)
  • Entrepreneur Magazine
  • Bloomberg Business News
  • WorkCompCentral.com
  • Claims Magazine
  • Risk & Insurance Magazine
  • Insurance Journal
  • Workers Compensation.com
  • LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites
  • Various trade publications


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