OR WCD Issues Notice Of Base Rates Assessment

                               
Portland, OR (CompNewsNetwork) - The Oregon's Division of Workers' Compensation published a bulletin notifying self-insured employers of the new base rates to be used for premium assessment during the July 1, 2009 through June 30, 2010 fiscal year. In addition, this bulletin provides reporting instructions and new retrospective rating plan options. This bulletin replaces Bulletin 349 dated May 27, 2008.

Important Changes:

• New retrospective rating plan tables (See attachment for more information)
• New base rates (See attachment for more information)
• Corporate officer maximum increased (See attachment for more information)
• New contact phone number for the Field Audit Unit

Note:  The forms and rates in this bulletin are not effective until July 1, 2009. Do not use this information to complete your 2nd quarter (April, May, June) 2009 Workers' Compensation Payroll & Assessment Report.

Selecting a Plan (Normal or Retrospective Rating) 

OAR 436-085-0030 allows self-insured employers two options to determine premium for assessment purposes: Normal Plan method or Retrospective Rating Plan method. 

The method selected by a self-insured employer remains in effect for all fiscal years until the employer notifies the department in writing prior to July 1 of its intent to change the method. If a company becomes self-insured after July 1, or does not select an option, the company must use the normal plan method for that fiscal year.

Normal Plan
The normal plan calculates the premium for assessment purposes, modifying standard premium by experience rating and premium discount. Self-insured employers must use the base rates in Exhibit B if they elect to pay premium assessment using this method.  These are the lowest rates filed by any insurance carrier effective April 1 that the director determined would provide the lowest overall rates. Use Form 440-937, "Workers' Compensation Payroll & Assessment Quarterly Report – Normal Plan" (Rev. 5/09) (copy attached) to report and pay.
 

Retrospective Rating Plan
This plan calculates the premium for assessment purposes, using a one-year retrospective rating plan. Five options are available under this plan. The selected option applies to all payroll and losses incurred on or after July 1 of each year the plan is in effect. Self-insured employers must use the information in Exhibit A if they elect to pay premium assessment using this method. This information identifies the options available along with definitions, examples, and instructions. Use Form 440-900, "Workers' Compensation Payroll & Assessment Quarterly Report – Retrospective Rating Plan" (Rev. 5/09) (copy attached) to report and pay.  

Reporting and Paying the Quarterly Premium Assessment

Complete and submit the correct Workers' Compensation Payroll & Assessment Quarterly Report for the plan you have selected. Payment is due and must be postmarked no later than the last calendar day of the month that follows the end of the calendar quarter. A civil penalty is automatically assessed for late reports or late payments.

The Workers' Compensation Division offers interactive forms (Microsoft Excel®) on its Web site: www.wcd.oregon.gov. These forms insert the correct base rate, calculate the premium due, calculate the premium discount, and compute the total assessment due. To use these forms, select ‘Bulletins' from the menu options and scroll to Bulletin 353. 

If you choose not to use the interactive forms, use copies of the reporting forms: 440-900 and 440-937. If you use computer-generated forms, please include the current base rates, assessment rate, premium discount rates, and updated legal entities. You must sign the certification portion. 

Waiver of Reporting Liability

The Department of Consumer and Business Services may waive a self-insured employer's reporting liability if the employer has no Oregon payroll for four consecutive quarters. The department will notify the employer in writing when it grants a waiver. Upon the effective date of a waiver, a self-insurer is exempt from filing quarterly reports so long as it has no Oregon payroll.

Classification Codes

A self-insured employer must contact the Workers' Compensation Division's Field Audit Unit at 503-934-6026, if it wants to change an existing class code or add a new class code to its established classifications. The self-insurer must submit justification for a class code change, along with a complete description of the work to be performed and the class code requested.  Please notify the department if your existing classification is no longer listed.

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