In full transparency, the following is a press release from the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office sent to SOURCE media.
BOSTON — Massachusetts businesses will save approximately $80 million under a settlement reached by Attorney General Maura Healey with the State Rating Bureau (SRB) and the Workers’ Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau (WCRIB).
The settlement, which follows an intervention by the Attorney General’s Office in an administrative fee hearing at the Division of Insurance, results in an average reduction of about 3.5 percent in workers’ compensation insurance rates.
The new rates will take effect on July 1, 2022.
“This settlement will save Massachusetts businesses millions of dollars, many of which are still struggling to recover from the pandemic,” AG Healey said. “Lowering workers’ compensation insurance rates not only helps small businesses, allowing them to invest in higher wages and growth, but also helps protect workers.”
Workers’ compensation insurance rates are established periodically in administrative rate hearings before the Division of Insurance. Insurance companies in the state generally work together to prepare a single joint filing and submit it for approval to the Commissioner.
The Attorney General’s Office may intervene in these proceedings and litigate against the proposal to protect the public interest. Massachusetts businesses are required to purchase workers’ compensation insurance to provide coverage for workers injured on the job, including medical costs and a portion of their lost wages.
In December 2021, the industry sought an overall statewide average rate increase of 2.7 percent and the Attorney General’s Office intervened in the rate proceeding seeking a rate reduction for Massachusetts taxpayers. The industry agreed not only to drop its request to increase rates, but also to implement a 3.5 percent average rate reduction for policyholders starting in July.
The Attorney General’s Office has also previously been successful in achieving reductions in workers’ compensation rates. After AG Healey weighed in on rate hearings in 2020, insurers agreed to cut rates by an average of 6.8 percent, saving Massachusetts customers about $80 million.
in 2018, the Attorney General’s Office successfully secured a 12.9 percent average rate reduction in workers’ compensation insurance in the state, saving approximately $150 million for businesses. Over the past 10 years, the Attorney General’s Office has saved employers and small businesses hundreds of millions of dollars by intervening in workers’ compensation insurance administrative fee cases. These savings translate into more jobs for state workers.
The AG’s Division of Insurance and Financial Services represents the public interest and litigates administrative rate cases to ensure rates are fair to Massachusetts policyholders. The Attorney General’s Office has worked collaboratively with the State Qualification Office to achieve rate reduction in this workers’ compensation insurance rate case.
This matter was handled by AG Healey Insurance and Financial Services Division staff, including Peter Leight, Dr. Burt Feinberg, Madonna Cournoyer, Lilia Dubois, Mike Sugar, Bridget Menkis, Gia Kim and Glenn Kaplan.