N.J. Regulator Approves 3.6% Average Workers’ Comp Rate Increase in 2014

December 3, 2013

New Jersey’s Compensation Rating And Inspection Bureau recently announced the state insurance commissioner’s approval for the workers’ compensation average rate increase for next year.

New Jersey Banking and Insurance Commissioner Kenneth Kobylowski has approved a 3.6 percent increase in rates and rating values applicable to New Jersey workers’ compensation and employers liability insurance effective January 1, 2014 on a new and renewal basis, according to the rating bureau’s Nov. 26 circular letter.

The rating bureau also noted that effective Jan. 1, 2014, the maximum weekly benefit with respect to all types of injuries — except permanent partial disabilities — will be changed from $826 to $843. The minimum weekly benefit will be changed from $220 to $225. In cases involving permanent partial disabilities, the present maximum weekly benefits ranging from $220 to $826, varying on the basis of duration of disability, will be changed to $225 and $843, respectively.

The minimum weekly benefit for permanent partial injuries will remain at $35. The effect of the changes to the minimum and maximum weekly benefits results in a premium level adjustment factor of 1.007 (+0.7 percent) due to benefits.

New Jersey law also mandates application of separate policyholder surcharges to finance the Second Injury and Uninsured Employers’ Funds. The rating bureau stated that — based on the N.J. Department of Labor and Workforce Development’s estimate of 2014 Fund requirements — the policyholder surcharge percentages effective Jan. 1, 2014, on a new and renewal basis to be applied to the modified premium are 6.56 percent for the Second Injury Fund and 0.00 percent for the Uninsured Employers’ Fund.

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