Consistent with findings over the last couple of years, workers compensation claims continue to drop. Minnesota’s Department of Labor and Industry has released its annual "Annual Minnesota Workers’ Compensation System Report," that indicates the number of paid workers’ compensation claims fell 36 percent relative to the number of employees from 1997 to 2007. Additionally, the report indicates that disputed claims increased during the period studied.
Among the report’s highlights:
- The claim rate fell continually from 1997 through 2007.
- Workers’ compensation system cost has fluctuated mildly relative to payroll since 1997, with a somewhat lower value for 2007 than for 1997.
- Adjusted for average wage growth, average medical and indemnity benefits per insured claim rose substantially between 1997 and 2006.
- Relative to payroll, medical benefits have risen since 1997 while indemnity benefits have fallen, reflecting the net effect of the falling claim rate and higher benefits per claim.
- The increase in indemnity benefits per claim is due primarily to increasing benefit duration and increases in the frequency and amounts of stipulated benefits.
- The vocational rehabilitation participation rate increased steadily between 1997 and 2003, but has changed relatively little since 2003.
- The dispute rate rose substantially from 1997 to 2007.
So basically claims are down and the insurance companies seem to be fighting even more. We look forward to seeing the premium reports. As an employer, I haven’t seen a reduction. Hopefully, the defense costs aren’t driving the bus now.
A founding partner with Bradshaw & Bryant, Mike Bryant has always fought to find justice for his clients—knowing that legal troubles, both personal injury and criminal, can be devastating for a family. Voted a Top 40 Personal Injury "Super Lawyer" multiple years, Mr. Bryant has also been voted one of the Top 100 Minnesota "Super Lawyers" four times.