Sometimes, one thing naturally follows another. Day follows night. Spring follows Winter. The relationship between the two things makes sense. Then we enter politics, and, as usual, logic and reason seem to trail behind.
We mentioned in previous postings that both the Pennsylvania insurance industry, and the Chamber of Commerce, has been heavily lobbying PA representatives and senators for reform to the Pennsylvania workers’ compensation system. Specific proposals and issues have been raised. One could reasonably draw from this angst that PA workers’ compensation insurance rates were steadily rising out of control. Indeed, one would imagine, given the effects of inflation, that the rates must be significantly increasing beyond normal inflationary levels.
It is most curious, then, that the Insurance Commissioner in Pennsylvania, Mike Consedine, recently proclaimed that workers’ comp insurance rates would actually DECREASE 4.01 percent as of April 1, 2013. For those imagining that this decrease must have followed some enormous increase, Commissioner Consedine noted that this “is the second workers’ compensation decrease in a row.”
Obviously, a decrease in workers’ compensation premiums will reduce the cost of doing business in the State of Pennsylvania, a result to the benefit of employers, employees and citizens of PA. According to the information provided by the Pennsylvania Insurance Department, this reduction in premiums represents a savings of $110 million to employers in PA.
So, given the decreasing cost of workers’ comp insurance in PA, one might ask why
the insurance industry and the Chamber of Commerce remain so focused on taking away the rights of the injured worker in Pennsylvania. Perhaps it is that they are so fixated on reforming workers’ comp in general that they failed to even notice rates are declining? Or, could it be that they value the health and safety of their employees so little that saving even more dollars is a higher priority?
People ask us why our firm limits its practice to representing the injured worker in Pennsylvania. The behavior of the Pennsylvania insurance industry, and the Chamber of Commerce, in trying to fix what isn’t broken, at the expense of their own employees, is the reason. Somebody has to stand behind those who have been injured. We want to be the ones to protect the injured worker from the insurance industry and the Chamber of Commerce.