Conn.’s Work Comp Second Injury Fund Assessment Rate Remains Unchanged

May 7, 2015

Connecticut’s Office of the Treasurer announced that the assessment rate for the state’s Second Injury Fund will continue to remain unchanged for fiscal year 2016 which begins on July 1, 2015.

The assessment rate for insurance companies is 2.75 percent for insured employers, 2.2 percent for assigned risk policies and 3.25 percent for self-insured employers, according to the May 1 announcement.

Connecticut State Treasurer Denise L. Nappier said this year marks the 17th consecutive year in which the Second Injury Fund has either reduced or maintained assessment rates for Connecticut businesses.

The cumulative effect of rate reductions since 1999 has resulted in a net savings f $1.1 billion for Connecticut businesses which include $110 million in projected savings during fiscal year 2016, according to Connecticut’s Office of the Treasurer. This change reflects a total reduction of 72.5 percent in rates assessed for insurance companies and 77.6 percent for self-insured employers.

The Second Injury Fund is a state-operated workers’ compensation insurance fund. It was first established in 1945 to discourage discrimination against veterans and encourage the assimilation of workers with a pre-existing injury into the workforce.

Connecticut’s Office of the Treasurer notes that Public Act 95-277 closed the fund to new “second injury” claims for injuries sustained on or after July 1, 1995 and expanded enforcement, fines and penalties against employers who fail to provide workers’ comp coverage.

Prior to July 1, 1995, the fund provided relief to employers where a worker, who already had a pre-existing injury or condition, was hurt on the job and that second injury was made “materially and substantially” worse by the first injury. Such employers transferred liability for these workers’ comp claims to the fund, if criteria were met under the Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Act.

Currently, the Second Injury Fund continues to be liable for those claims transferred prior to the closing of the fund as well as claims involving uninsured employers, reimbursement of cost of living adjustments for certain injuries involving payment of total disability benefits or dependent widow’s disability benefits and, on a pro rata basis, reimbursement claims to employers of any worker who had more than one employer at the time of the injury.

The Second Injury Fund seeks to provide quality service both to the injured workers and employers of Connecticut, whom it jointly serves.

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