Columbus, OH (WorkersCompensation.com) - Ohio workers compensation rates have dropped from 17th to 28th in the most recent Oregon Premium Rate Ranking Study, a biennial review of workers' compensation rates that is used as a national benchmark. In addition, rate-setting actions taken by the Ohio Bureau of Workersâ€™ Compensation over the past two years has resulted in the lowest collectible rates for private employers in 24 years.
"By working diligently with employers, workers, and other stakeholders, Ohio is continuing to reduce rates and becoming a better place to do business," said Administrator/CEO Steve Buehrer. "While we'll continue to search for ways to provide more effective and efficient service, our improvement as measured in the Oregon study is a clear indicator that weâ€™re headed in the right direction."
The Oregon Premium Rate Ranking Study compares each state's base rates for a selection of 50 widely used classification codes that are assigned to occupations to indicate their degree of risk. The study used Ohio private employer base rates effective July 1, 2011, as established by the BWC Board of Directors in May 2011. Ohio's base rate index in the 2012 study of $1.84 per $100 of payroll fell slightly below the national median of $1.88. Ohio's base rate index was $3.32 in 2008.
While the study examines base rates, the average amount per $100 of payroll that the BWC will actually collect from private employers during 2012/2013 is projected to be $1.74, which is the lowest rate in 24 years. The collectible rate represents the amount BWC collects after applying an employer's individual experience modifications and all discounts for participation in various programs.
In 2011, BWC reduced average base rates for private employers by 4 percent, and kept those rates stable in 2012, saving an estimated $130 million over two years. Not included in the study were rate actions that benefited public employers as well. Average collectible rates for public employers were cut 5 percent in both 2011 and 2012, saving those local governments an estimated $40 million over two years and bringing average collectible rates to their lowest since at least 1983.
"Even since the Oregon study was completed, rates have come down in Ohio," said Buehrer. "Lower rates and better care for injured workers helps improve the economy in our state."
The study, produced by the Oregon Department of Consumer & Business Services, is available here.
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