The cost to businesses for worker comp is down, but there’s a dispute over how much. The governor’s office says costs for compensating injured workers have dropped 19 percent since the state enacted worker comp reform in 2011. This is based on recommendations to insurance companies by National Council on Compensation Insurance.
But those reductions haven’t been passed along to businesses, though, says Mark Denzler of the Illinois Manufacturers Association. “Companies have not seen anywhere near a 20 percent reduction. When I talk to our members, some have seen their rates stay stable, some have gone down 3, 4, 5 percent, but I couldn’t honestly tell you that I’ve talked to one company who’s seen a double-digit reduction,” he said.
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Denzler says the 2011 reforms, mainly involving the medical fee schedule, have moved Illinois to the fourth-most expensive state for worker comp, down from third. He says more reform is needed, including apportioning the cost of a worker comp payout from a business based on the extent to which the workplace caused or aggravated the injury in question.