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Blog Index
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Friday
Dec302016

5 Strategies to Reducing Workers' Compensation Costs

Workers’ Compensation Insurance is, many times, one of the highest single expenses in an organization. What most businesses don’t realize is that there are many strategies they can employ to reduce the overall cost of their Work Comp program by controlling claims and their Experience Modification Factor. Now, this isn’t a post on how the Experience “Mod” works so I won’t dive too deep into the mechanics behind it. However, suffice it to say the less claims you have the lower your mod will be. 

Think of Workers’ Compensation as simply a vehicle to finance the cost of injuries. After you have a claim your Mod is going to adjust accordingly costing you more in premium dollars. In essence, you are financing that injury over a 3-year period. Because of that fact it is imperative for business owners and managers to have strategies in place to reduce their Workers’ Compensation claims and keep overall costs down. Here are 5 recommendations on reducing Work Comp costs.

1)    Build a Solid OSHA Program

  • In most organizations, OSHA is a bad four letter word. However, having a proactive OSHA Program will not only keep you in compliance with OSHA but will also help in reducing and eliminating Work Comp Claims.

2)    Integrate Programs into Daily Operations

  • Having solid programs and policies alone won’t get results. They must be built in the fabric of the organization to really make an impact.

3)    Investigate all Injuries and Illnesses

  • Utilizing in depth accident investigations gives you the ability to really drill down to the root cause of a Work Comp claim. This allows you to adjust your policies and procedures accordingly to avoid the accident in the future.

4)    Provide Ongoing Training to all Employees

  • Ongoing training is key to a successful work comp cost reduction strategy. The business and working environment change regularly which means it is important to provide employees continuous training on the policies and programs in place.

5)    Audit for Continuous Improvement

  • Always be improving. As mentioned above, the business environment is constantly changing and the business owners that can change along with it will have the most success.

For a more in depth look at these five strategies open our Work Comp Insights bulletin on exactly this topic.

Tuesday
Dec202016

FMCSA Creates National Clearinghouse for Drug and Alcohol Testing

On December 5, 2016, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published a final rule that creates a national drug and alcohol testing clearinghouse for commercial driver license holders (CLDs) who operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).

Under the rule, employers will be required to use the national database to check whether their current and prospective employees have unresolved violations under the FMCSA’s drug and alcohol testing program. At least once per year, motor carriers will be required to use the national clearinghouse database to check on a current employee’s status. Each motor carrier must incorporate the verification into their hiring process for prospective employees as well.

The rule also requires CDL holders to notify their employers whenever they violate a drug or alcohol testing regulation while working for a different employer. Affected employers are any individuals who operate CMVs in commerce in the United States and who are subject to the CDL requirements.

 

Important Dates:

December 5, 2016

The FMCSA publishes a final rule creating the national drug and alcohol testing clearinghouse.

January 4, 2017

The final rule becomes effective.

January 6, 2020

Compliance with the final rule is required.

 

For access to our full compliance bulletin regarding the new FMCSA rule you can open the FMCSA National Testing Clearinghouse Compliance Bulletin.

Monday
Dec192016

What is Replacement Cost Valuation?

Many people believe replacement cost in an insurance policy is:

  1. What they paid for it
  2. What they think it’s worth or
  3. The market value

However, none of the above are considered when referring to the replacement cost of a building or structure.

Replacement cost covers the cost of repairing or rebuilding the structure with materials of the same or comparable quality.   

Market value refers to the estimated amount that a property would sell for on a specific date.  Land, the real estate market and many more factors are considered in the property’s market value.

Unlike market value, replacement cost does not include the value of any land and is determined based on the amount needed to hire contractors and purchase materials to repair a building or construct a replacement.

Another important factor about the replacement cost of a building is that it does not take depreciation into account at the time of loss. 

Calculating a property’s replacement cost is difficult, and can be easy to insure for the wrong amount.

A few factors that effect changes in rebuilding costs are:

  • Newly redesigned kitchens
  • Unique structural designs
  • Types of building materials
  • Media rooms
  • Completing unfinished areas
  • Changes in economic conditions
  • Building codes and construction cost
  • Architectural and contractor fees

Having an in-depth conversation with your insurance broker about a particular property will help you determine your specific insurance needs and obtain a policy that meets those needs.

 

 

 

Tuesday
Dec062016

Truck Drivers and Sleep Apnea Testing - November P&C Profile

Truck drivers being tested for Sleep Apnea is just one of the topics of our most recent P&C Profile for the Transportation Industry. The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that a trucking company was within its rights to test drivers for sleep apnea if their body mass index was above 35. This ruling is likely to serve as a precedent in future cases.

Among the other topics of our P&C Profile are Veterans having an easier time obtaining CDLs under a new rule and the pending electronic logging device (ELD) mandate being the top concern among carriers.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced a final rule that would simplify the process for veterans who want to obtain a CLP or CDL. The new rule allows for veterans to use their past experience in the military as a pre-requisite for moving the process along a little quicker.

ELDs were a top concern in a recent survey with most respondents concerned about the impact on productivity when ELDs are rolled out in late 2017. To find our more information on this mandate and the other topics in the November Issue of out Transportation P&C Profile click on the link to open the newsletter!

Friday
Dec022016

Cyber Attack Loss Scenario #2:

An equipment dealer’s system contained a virus that affected external customer computers.
 
Coverage response (First Party):
-System Restoration: $200
 
Coverage response (Third Party):
-Defense Costs: $18,000
-Settlement Costs: $30,000
 
-Total Loss: $48,200
 
A Cyber Liability policy, offering both first and third party coverages, is an important piece of every businesses risk management program. In the example above, if the organization did not have a Cyber Liability policy, many of these expenses would not be paid.
 

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