Five Things You Need to Know: 3/7, Tuesday Edition


1) Iowa Workers’ Comp Legislation Gains National Attention

House Study Bill 169 and Senate Study Bill 1170 have gained national attention since hitting the legislative floor last week, and according to Sen. Michael Breitbach (R-Strawberry Point), the debate will continue this week."It passed through the Senate Commerce Committee on Thursday (March 2)," the senator said in an email to over the weekend. One of the four major changes in the system — that was once considered affordable but now rates 24th-highest out of 51 in the 2016 Oregon Workers’ Compensation Premium Rate Ranking Summary — would decrease coverage for any work-related injury connected to a pre-existing injury. To read more, click here. 


2) To Be or Not Be Certified: That is the Question

The Certified Workers’ Compensation Healthcare Provider (CWcHP) certification is the first of its kind. Created and administered by the International Sports Professionals Association (ISPA) in 2010, the certification took two years of research and testing to develop, according to Justin Mayer, executive director of the ISPA, who added that the online platform and flexibility are two of the certification's greatest assets, aside from the ultimate goal of better connecting therapists with workers’ compensation claimants' employers. To read more, click here.  


3) KY Bill Limiting Workers' Comp Benefits on Hold

House Bill 296, limiting workers' compensation benefits, has been halted after it passed in the House of Representatives last week, writes Ryland Barton of 89.3 WFPL (Kentucky NPR station). "House Bill 296 would allow employers and insurers to stop paying workers’ compensation benefits if an injury isn’t resolved within 15 years. The bill was scheduled for a Senate committee hearing on Monday morning but was not taken up as lawmakers try to hammer out a compromise," writes Barton. The bill, opposed by injured workers and unions, could be heard in a newer version format this week, according to Sen. Alice Forgy Kerr of Lexington in the article. The bill could help decrease workers' comp fraud, according to supporters. “I think what we’re looking at with all workers’ comp issues is to weigh out how we’re working to help the injured worker versus how are we helping and benefiting businesses and their concerns,” said Kerr, chair of the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Tourism and Labor.  


4) PA Cleaning Company Owner Turns Himself In for Insurance Fraud and Forgery

Herbert McKingley, a 35-year-old man out of Brodheadsville, PA was arrested after turning himself in on March 1 for insurance fraud and forgery, writes Howard Frank of the Pocono Record. "The arrest is the result of an investigation into McKingley's company, Service Boss International, Inc., a Dalton residential and commercial cleaning and janitorial service," writes Frank. "According to the task force, Service Boss entered into a contract to provide janitorial and other services for Scranton Preparatory School on Nov. 1, 2013. McKingley provided an Acord certificate of liability insurance to Prep's plant administrator, which showed that the company had an active workers' compensation insurance policy for the 12 months ending July 1, 2014." Three Service Boss employees were hurt while working at the prep school. McKingley showed the prep school a forged certificate of insurance. "The task force charged McKingley with two counts of insurance fraud, two counts of forgery and two counts of failure to comply with the Workers' Compensation Act," according to the article.  


5) Houston, TX Woman Sues Katy Furniture LLC for not Paying Overtime

Harris County resident Jaime Pratt filed a complaint against Katy Furniture LLC and company owner Amir Mahdejian in February, alleging workers' compensation act violations for not paying overtime wages, writes Noddy A. Fernandez of the Southeast Texas Record. "According to the complaint, between November 2014 and August 2016, Pratt was employed as a salaried, non-exempt manager by the defendants. The suit says Pratt consistently worked more than 40 hours per week but was never paid an overtime premium," writes Fernandez. "The plaintiff alleges the defendants failed to pay overtime premium at a rate not less than one and one-half times her regular rate for each hour worked more than 40 per week as required by FLSA." 


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