Workers Compensation Self-Insureds Gripe at me Most for this One Reason


Yes, I admit it.  I often write about Experience Modification Factors, premium audits, and other parts of the WC system.  I should be writing more articles on Workers Compensation Self Insureds than I have over the years.   Then again, I am not the only author that ignores this large market segment of the insurance industry.

Workers Compensation Self Insureds – A Few Numbers

Where do I go to find numbers on workers compensation self-insurance?  I had to range far and wide to find most of the numbers.  I had always estimated the self-insurance market at 15%.

A quick look at the overall numbers include

  • According to the SIAA, 6,000 corporations and their subsidiaries are workers compensation self-insureds.
  • Many governmental organizations self insure for workers comp – a massive amount of risk
  • California pre-pandemic statistics
    • $122 Billion total self-insured payroll
    • 2.3 Million CA Workers covered by self-insurance
    • 3,613 CA private entities are active self-insurers
    • $4 Billion Estimated Claims Reserves (EFL)
    • $1.4 Billion Medical and Indemnity payments
    • 76,675 Open Workers’ Compensation cases

No Self-insurance Rating Bureau Pandemic Relief

A few recent articles of mine covered the Catastrophe Code 12 for claims and the Classification Code 0012 for furloughed employees both assisting the employers except for self-insureds.   We may have to wait until 2026 to see the full effect of those two employer-assistance measures created by the Rate Bureaus.

Self-insureds do not usually submit their information to the rate bureaus as the insurance carriers are tasked with reporting this information through UNIT STAT reports.  

The bottom line – workers’ compensation self-insurance had no “buffer zones” to assist with having to pay out of company funds to cover work-related COVID-19 claims.   Please note that there could be some type of state government assistance to self-insureds by a specific state.  I have not seen that development yet.  If there are any,  please comment below for the self-insured readers.  Thanks. 

Some Studies Leave Out Workers Compensation Self-Insureds

One of the reasons that I decided to write this article is a recent study by a well-known statistical company.  Once I read the article, I had to disagree with the study in the article.  I am not going to name the company in this article.  You can find the study at the link provided.   I may write an additional article next week on the study. 

Workers Comp self-insureds comprise 15% of the market, but are often left out of studies – and I should write about that market segment more than I have in the past.

This blog post is provided by James Moore, AIC, MBA, ChFC, ARM, and is republished with permission from J&L Risk Management Consultants. Visit the full website at

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