Workers’ comp rates are decreasing

The annual filing most insurance carriers will use to develop rates for workers’ compensation insurance in Oklahoma shows a decrease for the fifth year in a row.

The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) plans to file an overall loss cost decrease of 16.3 percent. NCCI credits Oklahoma’s reduction to several factors, with the most significant being the experience Oklahoma has had in recent years following legislative reforms.

The new loss costs will go through a review process and are expected to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2018. NCCI files loss costs annually with the Oklahoma Insurance Department and files supplemental amendments, when needed, to address significant changes in expectations such as court decisions.

“We have seen great success with efficiently resolving workplace injuries, but our work is not done,” Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner John D. Doak said. “The Legislature must continue to address areas of concern, such as those presented to the courts, to ensure we can maintain a stable market in Oklahoma. We are reaching a point where continued improvements in our markets will require innovation in the care of injured workers.”

The 2018 filing shows the largest percentage decrease in loss costs since the reforms passed in 2013 went into effect. Over the past five years, the sum of decreases filed in the NCCI annual filings is 63.7 percent. Oklahoma’s decrease of 16.3 percent for 2018 is the largest decrease filed by NCCI this year.

NCCI will hold a State Advisory Forum in Oklahoma City on Oct. 10. The Oklahoma Insurance Department will sponsor a second forum in Tulsa on Oct. 11. For more information, call NCCI’s Customer Service Center at 800-NCCI-123.

The NCCI is an advisory organization that studies workplace injuries, collects workers’ compensation claim data, analyzes industry trends and develops loss costs to be used in the rate-making process. Most workers’ compensation carriers use the NCCI loss cost values when determining the rates charged to Oklahoma employers.