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Obama Administration Final Countdown For State Run Workers Comp?

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Obama Administration Looking To Federalize Workers Comp?

The Obama Administration may begin Workers Comp federal program.  In the past few months, I have performed a large number of phone consultations on Workers Compensation claims and premiums. One of the most common questions that I receive is what would be the largest shakeup in the Workers Compensation world in the next five years.

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As the title of this post indicates, the federalization of Workers Comp – and it is in process as I write this – would make Workers Comp not look anything like it does today. If we examine what was once state administered and then converted to a federal administration, one can see great changes. Workers Comp would be no different.

From my viewpoint, if health care becomes nationalized, then it will be a very small leap to have 24 hour coverage. This is especially true if employers are tagged with administering the national health part of the plan. How many times have we seen states say that 24 hour coverage could grow from the health insurance as a modified carve out program? I have never seen the states say we can expand Workers Comp coverage to include health. Once again, nationalized health converted to 24 hour coverage would obliterate the Workers Comp infrastructures of each state. I am not intending to say this would be a positive or negative occurrence.

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How well would the program run? I do not want to pick on the TSA, so I will point out the digital TV transition that was federalized. I will register no opinion. It is a great example of a federalized program.

The whole transition may not take place for 20 years. I am still trying to fathom what the system would look like overall. The main concern would be if the federal government becomes a Workers Comp insurer that could charge less than the competition for the same coverage, what would happen to the current Workers Comp carriers?

I am not making a political statement.

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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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