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NCCI Says Workers Comp Costs Up, Number of Claims Down

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NCCI Says Workers Comp Costs Up – Number of Claims Decreasing

The NCCI  says claims costs are  increasing  but the number of workers comp claims is decreasing .   According to a very recent report by NCCI(R), the downward trend in the number of Workers Compensation claims has continued for 2009. The disappointing factor for cost cutters is that the actual costs per claim has increased. NCCI always does a great job in analyzing data and drawing various conclusions.

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 My take on the numbers being down with costs increasing are threefold:

  • The more complex claims are now prevalent. Companies are shrinking. The number of newer and smaller claims compared to the complex claims is decreasing as the same injury rate applied to a smaller group means less claims.
  • Many studies have shown that any worker out of work six months will not return back to work. Companies may not have the same job available on a return to work. This would push the TTD period beyond six months much more easily resulting in more complex claims.
  • There is a self-induced pressure on employees to keep working and not file a claim. This is the basic fear of job loss. I have not seen any studies, but I am sure there is a small “bump up” in claims if and when the economy comes out of a recession due to employees having a lower fear of a job loss if they do report a claim.
  • The number of claims decreasing should not be a surprise during or just after  a recession.  With the number of workers decreasing, the numbers of claims would naturally decrease.  The employers’ risk portfolios are smaller due to less workers.

If anyone has more to add or disagrees, please post a reply or send me an email.

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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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