Ohio Appeals Court Decision Start Privatization Conversation?

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Ohio Appeals Court Decision  Could Change BWC

Picture Of Ohio Appeals Court Building
Wikimedia Commons – Original uploader was Analogue Kid

A recent Ohio Appeals Court Decision against the Bureau of Workers Compensation (BWC) may possibly start the progression of the state’s monopolistic Workers Compensation system to a free market system.  The court decision is well worth a quick review.  (Pages 5 -7 and 101 – 104).

Some of the extremely strong-worded opinions is included at the end of this article (italics).  This article is not going to bash the BWC.  The appellate judges take care of that in their decision.

There are numerous articles in this blog that pertain to Ohio’s BWC and the problems associated with a monopolistic state fund.   An article was posted in this blog on the BWC overcharges.   There are many articles in this blog on Ohio’s BWC including ones that followed this lawsuit from the start until now.  Feel free to use the search box on the right margin and input Ohio or BWC.  

West Virginia decided to successfully move from a monopolistic fund to privatization.   Brickstreet Insurance was a conduit for the change.  Unless I am mistaken only North Dakota, Ohio, Washington,  and Wyoming are the last four monopolistic state funds.   North Dakota’s monopolistic fund – Workforce Safety and Insurance- has incurred many problems over the last few years.  

Once again, the Ohio Appeals Court decision is well worth your time to read over it.   A few highlights are pointed out below.  

The Ohio Appeals Court building
Wikimedia Commons – Sixflashphoto

Reduced to its irreducible essence, this appeal is about a cabal of Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (“BWC”) bureaucrats and lobbyists for group sponsors who rigged workers’ compensation insurance premium rates so that for employers who participated in the BWC’s group rating plan (“group-rated employers”), it was “heads we win,” and for employers who did not participate in the group rating plan(“nongroup-rated employers”), it was “tails you lose.”

 For more than 15 years, the BWC allowed nongroup-rated employers to subsidize excessive, undeserved premium discounts to group-rated employers who were handpicked by group sponsors to participate in the BWC’s group rating plan. The temerity of the group sponsors, untempered by any notions of equity from or of the BWC, exacted a heavy price for nongroup-rated employers — over $859 million.


In this case, the BWC violated one of the most basic principles of workers’ compensation insurance, i.e., that every employer participating in Ohio’s workers’ compensation system be charged a reasonable, accurate, and equitable premium rate that corresponds to the risk the employer presents to the workers’ compensation system.

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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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