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This Is Not The Way Workers Compensation Is Supposed To Operate

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The Way Workers Compensation Operates in Maryland – Updated 

Maryland Map Way Workers Compensation With USA Flag Background
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It is the way Workers Compensation should work? I could hardly believe my eyes when I read that the Maryland State Senate had passed a bill that will establish a unit with the State Department of Labor allowing labor inspectors to forcibly enter into a business without notice and review their Workers Compensation records.     

The supporters of the bill say the bill would allow the state to monitor which businesses are not paying into the state’s workers compensation insurance fund that pays claims. Violators could be fined up to $5,000, under the bill. There are many other ways to track businesses that are not paying Workers Comp premiums. Maryland’s’ government can easily search through computer records of the businesses and then match them to the Workers Comp records.  There is no need to have government inspectors bust into businesses like a raid to see what Worker’s Comp records can be found and if they pass some type of litmus test.   

USA Department Of Labor Way Workers Compensation Emblem
Wikipedia – U.S. Department of Labor

I have seen in many states where the governments are trying to figure out which businesses do or do not have Workers Compensation insurance.  West Virginia did a very commendable job in searching out and dealing with Workers Comp insurance violators.  I remember reading about the Department of Insurance posting signs on the front doors of West Virginia businesses that informed their workers and the public that the company did not have Workers Comp insurance.  

How did the Department of Insurance know that these businesses did not have coverage?  They matched it to other computer records.  Maryland should take note of what West Virginia did to enforce their Workers Compensation requirements.       

Opponents of the bill say the measure would allow the state to inspect home-based businesses without notice. I do not think that the inspectors’ jobs would be to barge into a home-based business as the focus would be larger businesses.  

The bill now goes to the House of Delegates.  Hopefully, they will turn this onerous bill away. 

 I try to stay very general in the blog except when there is such an unfair development in a certain state that would be very disadvantageous to businesses. 

2011 Update – The Bill was not passed – remember to always keep your workers’ comp records up to date using spreadsheets.  

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James Moore

Raleigh, NC, United States

About The Author...

James founded a Workers’ Compensation consulting firm, J&L Risk Mgmt 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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