newsletter header

The WSIA Weekly, 7.31.15

WSIA’s 2015 Fall Conference – “Key Into Safety” – Opens Registration Next Tuesday!

Watch your e-mail box next Tuesday for the announcement of general registration for WSIA’s next major member conference, our 2015 Fall Conference happening all day September 25th at the Embassy Suites in Lynnwood. Our program, “Key Into Safety,” will focus on accident prevention and cost containment strategies, as well as compliance help and a few important claims management updates. Like last year, we’re featuring best practices from other self-insured companies’ programs, as told by key directors in those companies. Readers of today’s newsletter can get a jump on registration, sponsorship, and exhibitor opportunities by clicking this program page, which further includes links to registration and sponsorship/exhibitor information.

 Also Coming Tuesday: IIU’s Fall Curriculum Offerings

WSIA’s Industrial Insurance University professional development center has been busy this summer developing a fall catalog of continuing education that will be packed with timely and need-to-know updates for the entire workers’ compensation community. We’ll have new monthly webinars, our normal Certification Review and Intro to Claims series, and a new Legal Issues Workshop in the announcement. Check it out Tuesday as well.

 More on the JLARC Claims Management Performance Audit – First Reactions

Last Friday’s newsletter contained a link to the just-released preliminary draft of the Joint Legislative Audit & Review Committee (JLARC) performance audit of workers’ compensation claims management. Ordered by the Legislature during the 2011 reforms, and analyzing claims from 2010 to 2013, the report’s preliminary draft and the auditor’s recommendations were formally delivered to the committee in a public hearing Wednesday of this week. On the WSIA Blog, we’ve provided some first reactions to the performance audit, as well as links to the underlying audit materials and a video of Wednesday’s JLARC hearing. Take a look by clicking here.

 Department Issues Q2 Insolvency Trust Notice

Earlier this week, the Department of Labor & Industries issued the required notice to the Insolvency Trust Board on the status of insolvent self-insurer claims, the health of the fund, and any ongoing litigation. There are a number of pending court cases affecting surety recovery that are worth being aware of. Take a look at the most recent report by clicking here.

 BIIA Changes Social Security Offset Timing

Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals employer representative Jack Eng brought to our attention a new Decision and Order filed last week where the Board, on a 3-0 vote, made a change in the way it has looked at the offset of time loss benefits when a claimant is also receiving social security disability benefits. While the details of the dispute are especially dry, the holding is basically this: the Board has reversed a line of prior decisions and now holds that the date that controls the amount of federal benefits to be offset from time loss payments is the first date of the worker’s receipt of concurrent federal and state benefits, rather than the date of the worker’s entitlement to social security benefits. Interested folks can dial up the Decision and Order by clicking here.  

 UWC Releases Bulletin of Nationwide Legislative Activity

Earlier this week, District of Columbia-based UWC, of which WSIA is a member, released its annual report on legislative activity in workers’ compensation around the country in 2014. Although the bulletin does not take into account changes made so far in 2015, it is an interesting catalog of the big policy issues moving in state capitals around the country. Take a look at the bulletin by clicking here.