Week of April 24 - 28, 2017             
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Welcome to your weekly WCI Newsletter. We have selected the top stories that appeared on our website this week to help you stay up to date on what is happening in the world of workers' compensation and insurance. Enjoy.
FL Watch: An Afternoon of Legislative Action

By Angela Underwood

Workers' Compensation benefits in Florida are not what they used to be.

House Insurance & Banking Committee Chairman Daniel Burgess, Jr. (R-Zephyrhills) went toe-to-toe on amendments with his Democratic peers over the highly-controversial  HB 7085 package concerning benefit restoration, medical choice and fee provisions... and won. was present this afternoon for the House Session via livestream to report on the failing and passing amendments benefits. One of the biggest amendments, based on a recent Florida Supreme Court decision over capping attorney fees at $150, was introduced by Rep. Evan Jenne (D-Hollywood). Read more.
Highs and Lows in Cali: Largest Workers' Comp Settlement Ever and Rate Reduction Rule

By Angela Underwood

The juxtaposition of the largest workers' compensation settlement in the state with the California Department of Insurance considering a rate reduction proves the Golden state is on a positive streak.  

The state is on the hook for $10 million to an injured worker who settled the largest workers' compensation claim in the nation's history under the coming and going rule, and it has been deemed doable to reduce its rate for the fifth year in a row.

Not bad, California, not bad. Read more.
Rousmaniere: The Future of Two Cities

By Peter Rousmaniere

The City of Work Injuries is shrinking in population while the City of Non-Occ Absences expands. During the Trump Administration, these trends are sure to persist. At some time they will change the workers' comp industry as we know it.

When and how? I predicted in 2015 a scenario for the 2020s by which the current workers' compensation would incrementally convert to a more privatized worker benefit placed on a platform shared with non-occupational absence protections that employees demand. These include short term and long term disability, paid sick leave, and paid parental leave.

President Trump jumped the gun in its first month by airing the idea of paid parental leave. In his address to Congress on Jan. 20, he proposed "to help ensure new parents have paid family leave." Read more.
IAIABC Paper: Saskatchewan Work Comp Board CEO Talks How to Shift from Negative to Fully Functional

By Dara Barney

For Peter Federko, CEO of Saskatchewan, Canada's Workers' Compensation Board, the concept of returning an employee back to work after an injury really does start with the injured worker, but doesn't end there.

"How do we get the people who have already bought in to the idea of return to work, and how do we get the people who aren't there yet to understand why this is good for not just the injured worker, but the employers, caregivers, insurance companies, regulators/legislators and attorneys too?" He asked in multiple International Association of Industrial Accidents Boards and Commissions (IAIABC) Disability Management and Return to Work Committee meetings involving people from all over the world, a committee of which he is chair. Read more.
Research Finds Stress is Bad for Workers, Bad for Business

By Simply Work Comp Blog
Work-related stress has significant costs for worker health and for a business's bottom line. Three studies looked at stress in the workplace from different angles.

A workplace and health study described in the  Harvard Gazette reported widespread stress at work, with 43 percent of workers saying their job is bad for their stress, and only 16 percent saying work had a positive impact on their stress levels. Forty-six percent of working women say their job has a bad impact on their stress level, compared to 40 percent of men. Read more.
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