A Tip for Controlling Workers’ Compensation Costs


Off-site Transitional Duty Programs

A valuable tool for controlling workers’ compensation costs for an employer is the implementation of an effective transitional duty program. Without this piece, employers can struggle to manage workplace injuries, and workers’ compensation claims are more likely to spiral out of control. For this reason, many organizations have adopted transitional duty programs and created job task banks to allow for the accommodation of a variety of work restrictions.

But what if you don’t have work that falls within the prescribed work restrictions for an employee injured on the job? Many companies face unique challenges, such as limited transitional duty options, remote employees and language barriers. For situations like these, off-site transitional duty programs are a viable option, as they offer an injured employee meaningful work during their recovery period at off-site locations.

Many insurance carriers have a network of prequalified not-for-profit organizations and volunteer sites available to assist employers in offering meaningful work to injured employees when circumstances may not otherwise allow transitional duty within the workplace.

What are the benefits of off-site transitional duty?

  • Reduces or eliminates the number of lost workdays and helps the employee recover more quickly than if they would have been off of work.
  • Eliminates the financial disruption of the employee, as the employer pays their normal wages during the placement, resulting in no indemnity payment on the workers’ compensation claim.
  • Potentially lowers an employer’s experience modification factor by applying the experience rating adjustment on medical-only claims, resulting in a 70% reduction in the overall claim cost (for participating states).
  • Reduces legal risks, as studies have shown that employees actively engaged in return to work programs are much less likely to seek legal counsel.
  • Reduces deconditioning and assists employees in maintaining strength and endurance during their recovery period for a safer gradual return to regular job functions.
  • Provides possible tax incentives.

How To Implement

If, after meeting with supervisors and managers to identify adequate transitional tasks, there is a realization that there are limited options, consult with Morris & Reynolds Insurance. We can help you implement a comprehensive return to work program that will protect your bottom line, while still providing your employees with appropriate care.

We hope you found this article helpful and informative. Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any questions. We are always here to help.

OSHA Log Summaries due by February 1st , 2019

The deadline for posting the annual OSHA log Summary (the OSHA Form 300A) is February 1st, 2019. Below is a video reminding you to submit the form but more importantly inform your clients of it’s importance. Additionally the form must be posted in an area that is easily identified by employees, between February 1st and April 30th.

The below short video will help you comply with this OSHA requirement.

To view the video, click here.

We hope that you found this video helpful and informative, helping you stay on top of compliance.

Internship Programs under the FLSA

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Many organizations use internship programs, and these programs can have many advantages for the employer and the intern. However, employers that hire interns must be aware of the rules that apply to interns under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

The FLSA requires most employees of for-profit employers—including interns—to be compensated for their services. Unpaid internships are generally permissible in the public sector and for nonprofit charitable organizations. However, interns of for-profit private sector companies generally must be paid at least the minimum wage and receive overtime compensation. There is a very limited exception to this rule for trainees who participate in an internship program for their own educational benefit.

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Supreme Court Ruling Allows Employers to Require Arbitration and Bar Class-Action Lawsuits

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OVERVIEW

On May 21, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that employers can use arbitration clauses in employment contracts to bar employees from filing class-action lawsuits related to wage and overtime claims. In a 5-4 split decision, the court determined that employment agreements can require arbitration, waiving the employee’s right to participate in a class-action lawsuit, to settle these disputes.

This ruling is a departure from the position taken by the Obama administration and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Instead, the decision favors employers and follows President Donald Trump’s position on federal employment law that employers are entitled to waive their employees’ right to file class-action lawsuits under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA).

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Covered Establishments in All States Must Now Submit OSHA Electronic Reports

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OVERVIEW

On April 30, 2018, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced it will require all establishments affected by the electronic reporting rule to submit their 2017 data to OSHA by July 1, 2018.

This announcement clarifies the requirement for establishments in states with an OSHA-approved plan. These establishments must submit electronic reports, regardless of whether the state has ratified or incorporated the electronic reporting rule into its OSHA state plan.

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