by: Greg Blosé
CEO, Palm Coast-Flagler Regional Chamber
The National Council on Compensation Insurance, which files rates on behalf of Florida carriers, has proposed a 4.9% average decrease in workers' compensation across industrial classifications and a 14.1 % decrease for federal classifications. If approved by the Office of Insurance Regulation, the proposed lower rates will take effect for new and renewal policies beginning on Jan. 1, 2022.
The Palm Coast-Flagler Regional Chamber, along with our partners at the Florida Chamber of Commerce, are fighting to keep workers’ comp rates low, while urging employers to continue implementing safety initiatives that protect employees. The construction industry is a major job creator in Flagler County. From builders to subcontractors, the chamber has been working hard to support and protect construction jobs in our region. Lowering the cost of doing business for the construction industry is key area of focus for the chamber.
Why Did Rates Go Down?
NCCI cited strong underwriting results, or an underwriting profit, as the reason for the decrease. In addition to underwriting discipline, technology, safer workplaces, improved risk management and a shift from manufacturing to the service sectors have driven down the frequency of claims. NCCI’s filing does not include an adjustment for COVID-19; however, they have filed a separate proposed catastrophe provision, which they believe would be the best way to reflect exposure to future pandemics or other events that would result in significant losses to the workers’ comp system.
The Palm Coast-Flagler Regional Chamber and our partners at the Florida Chamber will monitor these filings as they move through the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation’s approval process, which could include a public hearing for members of the public to offer feedback. Additionally, the Florida Chamber continues to stand ready to address any cost drivers in the workers’ comp system should the opportunity present itself before the Legislature or through agency rulemaking.
Since the last major workers’ comp reform led by the Florida Chamber in 2003, workers’ comp rates in Florida have decreased by nearly 70%.