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Workers’ Compensation Insurance Trends to Look Out for in 2017

Author DMalloy , 2/13/2017
Workers’ compensation continues to be a major concern for employers and while some industries have more claims than others, every business–no matter its focus–has certain risks and all have concerns about the associated costs. For you, the challenge may be how to continue helping clients when health care costs are going to spike and helping clients understand. Even though health care costs are rising, strategies to decrease your company’s risk and moderate premiums in workers’ compensation continue to evolve.

Workers Compensation Programs

Author DavidMalloy , 10/17/2016
At PMC we can provide your agency access to a wide range of markets to better service your clients. Our Markets cover a broad appetite for accounts with favorable loss experience over $75,000 such as Construction, Healthcare, Hospitality, Manufacturing. PMC can offer guaranteed cost, retros and large deductible options.

New Jersey Agents - Access Top-Rated Carriers

Author DavidMalloy , 10/5/2016
For the past 20 years, PMC has been developing one of the
Broadest Underwriting Appetites in the Industry. If it's Guarantee Cost, Loss Sensitive or Alternative Markets, PMC has the expertise and market connections to find your Solution!

Ask the Workers' Comp Expert: Internal Investigations Can Reduce Claims, Costs

Author DavidMalloy , 6/4/2012
Ask the Workers' Comp Expert: Internal Investigations Can Reduce Claims, Costs
by Robert G. Jones, Vice President, PMC Insurance Group

Recent "Ask the Expert" columns addressed certain aspects of return-to-work programs. Today, we address strengths and flaws within a workers’ compensation program focusing on reducing the number of claims and overall cost.

The number of lost time claims is a key metric and should be reviewed at least annually. If this number exceeds 25 percent of total claims, further investigation is recommended. Another important metric is the number of claims that are litigated. If this number exceeds 20 percent of all claims, a comprehensive internal investigation is necessary. Business owners experiencing significant numbers of lost time and/or litigated claims need to examine the root cause(s) driving these adverse claims results.

The business owner should review the following as a part of an internal investigation:
  • Is the hiring process effective in screening prospective employees? Background checks and drug testing at minimum. 
  • Are supervisors trained and accountable to build high performing teams that integrate workplace safety into job duties? Personal responsibility and employee morale are key components. 
  • How quickly are workers’ compensation claims reported to the insurance company? Within 24 hours is the goal. 
  • Are accidents and incidents investigated with findings documented and acted upon? How the business owner responds is an important component of organizational culture. 
  • Is communication with injured employees consistent and supportive? The goal being an early and successful return to work. 
  • Are wellness programs integrated into work activity? Tracking and communicating results reinforces the business owner’s commitment to a safe and healthy work environment. 

PMC Insurance Group’s only business is workers’ compensation. Our insurance professionals have extensive experience helping IIABNY members expand their marketing capabilities by providing workers’ compensation solutions for their clients, including offering guidelines to help business owners reduce the number of claims and overall cost.

NCCI Portrays a "Conflicted" Workers Compensation Industry

Author DavidMalloy , 5/21/2012
From : ProgramBusiness.com

NCCI today released its annual State of the Line workers compensation market analysis, describing the current state of the market as "conflicted." This year's report indicates that the workers compensation calendar combined ratio was 115 in 2011, the same number as in 2010.

"NCCI has observed a number of countervailing indicators in current industry conditions," said NCCI President and CEO Steve Klingel. "In some ways, we are seeing an improved condition from 2010. By other measures, however, the market remains in a worrisome state. In sum, we see a market that is conflicted as to its forward trajectory, and that makes for a challenging environment."

"Workers compensation, because of its direct connection to employment and the labor markets, has been the property/casualty line most significantly impacted by the continued difficult economic environment," added NCCI Chief Actuary Dennis Mealy. "Combined ratios remain at unsustainably high levels, and investment returns are not sufficiently high to generate operating returns near the cost of capital. On the more positive side, the growth in written premium provides strong support that the worst of the recession has passed. Additionally, the industry is well capitalized for the future."

As reported above, the workers compensation calendar year combined ratio for private carriers was 115 in 2011, the same result as in 2010. Not only did the overall combined ratio hold steady, all of the underlying components were also remarkably stable. However, for the third straight year, workers compensation holds the distinction of having the highest combined ratio of all the major commercial lines.

In terms of premium (including state funds), net written premium increased to $36.3 billion in 2011. This 7.4% increase in premium is the first increase since 2005, and a welcome shift following the cumulative 27% decline in premium from 2006–2010.

Other market indicators/trends highlighted in NCCI's 2011 State of the Line report include:
 • NCCI estimates that the combined ratio for private carriers for Accident Year 2011 is 114—down 2 points from 116 in 2010. 
• The private carrier reserve position continued its modest deterioration in 2011—for the fourth consecutive year. NCCI's estimate of the reserve position for the private carriers as of year-end 2011 is an $11 billion deficiency. 
• Since 2006, NCCI loss costs generally declined; in contrast, so far in 2012, loss costs have generally increased, with NCCI loss costs up 2.5% on average and countrywide bureau loss costs up 7.8%. The increase in 2012 is mostly due to a large increase in bureau loss costs in California. The increases in NCCI states have been attributable to a number of factors, including longer claim durations and upward pressure on claim frequency. 
• Lost-time claim frequency improved in 2011. After increasing 3% in 2010, claim frequency in 2011 declined 1% on average in NCCI states. NCCI research last year indicated that distortions in the data resulting from the recession and subsequent recovery affected our measure of claim frequency; current research indicates that those distortions continue.  
• In 2010, the average indemnity cost per lost-time claim decreased by 2.8%. In 2011, the average change was still a very modest increase of 2%.  
• The average medical cost per lost-time claim showed similarly favorable results. In 2010, the average cost per claim was just 1.3%, while in 2011 the increase was 4.0%. These are the lowest increases in average claim costs since the early 1990s.
• Although investment yields remain low, investment gains for the workers compensation insurance industry remained strong in 2011. Investment gains as a ratio to premium held at 14% of premium, higher than the average return of 11.6% that the industry earned from 2001–2010. ?
• Although the investment gain has improved, combining the underwriting loss with the large investment gains, the result is a pretax operating loss of 1% for the industry in 2011. This is the third consecutive year of near-zero operating gains. 
• The combined ratio of the residual market pools also increased slightly, from 120 in 2010 to 121 in 2011. At this time, the pools are quite small, so individual losses and states can have a disproportionate impact on the combined ratio. 
• Depopulation of the residual market ceased in 2011, reversing the trend of declining residual market premiums that began in 2005. Premiums grew by 13% in 2011 to approximately $509 million. Overall, the market share of the residual market pools serviced by NCCI for 2011 increased from 4.6% to 5%.  

Looking Ahead

NCCI's current analysis shows that the combined ratios for workers compensation remain at unsustainably high levels, and investment returns are not high enough to generate operating returns near the cost of capital. And, although claim frequency declined in the latest year, it is unclear whether it is yet returning to its long-term downward trend.

On the more positive side, the growth in written premium provides strong support that the worst of the recession has passed. Additionally, the industry is well capitalized for the future.

Moving forward, NCCI will continue to closely monitor trends and developments in claims frequency, an uncertain underwriting cycle, the as-yet-unknown impact from healthcare and financial services reforms, including the Federal Insurance Office (FIO), and new efforts to introduce alternatives to workers compensation.

The entire NCCI State of the Line presentation can be found at ncci.com. 

For more information about NCCI's State of the Line report, please visit ncci.com or contact NCCI Media Relations Director Gregory Quinn at 607-723-7878 or gregory_quinn@ncci.com.

NCCI is the nation's most comprehensive source of workers compensation insurance information. We gather data, analyze industry trends, and prepare objective insurance rate and loss cost recommendations. These activities, together with our research, analytical services and tools, and overall commitment to excellence, help foster a healthy workers compensation system. Visit ncci.com.


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New Workers' Compensation needlestick reimbursement program (available now)

Author DavidMalloy , 4/4/2012

PMC Insurance GroupThe Hartford's new Workers' Compensation needlestick reimbursement program NOW includes: Reimbursement for the initial cost of testing the patient for blood- borne diseases in addition to the employee Not all Workers' Compensation insurance reimburses for patient testing, which saves insureds costs and gives affected employees peace of mind

 

To ensure the safety of your workplace, Contact PMC Insurance Group today!!!

 

Call us today and put our expertise to work for you!

PMC Insurance Group (P) 877-PMC-COMP (P) 781-449-7744 (F) 781-449-7889
www.pmcinsurance.com info@pmcinsurance.com

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MA Workers Comp Rates Could Increase By 19.3 Percent

Author DavidMalloy , 4/2/2012
PMC Insurance Group The cost of employee compensation insurance for Massachusetts employers could rise dramatically later this year if rates proposed by insurers are approved by state regulators.

The Workers’ Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts, which represents companies that write workers’ compensation polices, asked the state to approve an average rate increase of 19.3 percent. Most businesses are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, which covers the medical treatment, rehabilitation, and lost wages of employees injured on the job.

If approved, the rates would go into effect in September.

The substantial increase is necessary, the bureau said, because the cost of claims continues to rise, but the state has denied smaller requests in three of the past four years. The Division of Insurance rejected proposed increases of 2.3 percent increase in 2008, 4.5 percent increase in 2010, and a 6.6 percent increase in 2011.

“If these three small increases in rates had been granted by the Commonwealth,’’ said Paul Meagher, president of the Workers’ Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts, “we would not need such a significant rate increase now.’’

Richard C. Lord, president of Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the state’s largest employers’ group, said yesterday in a blog post that the rate request deserves consideration. He said he is concerned that without an increase, fewer companies will offer the insurance, making it harder for businesses to buy policies.

“Private-market coverage is harder to come by because the economics of workers compensation no longer add up for insurers,’’ Lord wrote. “The growing disconnect between costs and premiums has already prompted several insurance companies to scale back their activity in Massachusetts.’’

Massachusetts once had some of the highest worker compensation costs in the country, but following reforms in 1991, those costs have declined steadily, falling by two-thirds over the past 20 years. If a premium cost $100 in 1991, the current rate would be $33.21. If the new rate request is approved, that premium would rise to $39.62, according to the Workers’ Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts.

The bureau said insurers need the increase to cover the rising costs of health care and wage replacement, driven by higher salaries and the longer leaves that claimants are taking. The number of claims has declined, but not fast enough to offset the increases in medical and wage replacement costs, the bureau said.

“While we recognize that the current filing calls for a significant rate increase, it reflects the real costs of providing this kind of insurance,’’ said Meagher. “Without a rate increase, we will be unable to maintain a competitive market for workers’ compensation insurance in Massachusetts.’’

The proposed rates will be examined in hearings held by Joseph G. Murphy, the state insurance commissioner. Murphy said yesterday that his office intends to “take a long, hard look at the process. This is a large increase, and this administration is particularly sensitive to the cost of doing business in the state.’’

Murphy said he expects to schedule a public hearing by the end of March.  

This article is courtesy of programbusiness.com, Source- Boston Globe dated mar 2, 2012  
  

Call us today and put our expertise to work for you!

PMC Insurance Group (P) 877-PMC-COMP (P) 781-449-7744 (F) 781-449-7889
www.pmcinsurance.com info@pmcinsurance.com

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To contact us, and for more information, please visit our CompleteMarkets storefront.

NY Lawmakers To Consider Raising Minimum Wage To 8.50 An Hour

Author DavidMalloy , 3/28/2012
PMC Insurance Group NEW YORK – Hundreds of thousands of workers making minimum wage in New York could soon be getting a big raise.
Minimum wage workers haven’t seen a pay increase in three years. That could soon change, since State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver reportedly plans to introduce a bill today, raising the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $8.50. That’s a 17 percent increase. The bill would also require the rate to be adjusted annually for inflation. Nationwide, 18 states already have a higher minimum wage rate. Earlier this month, Silver spoke about the need to bring New York up to par. He said the current minimum wage is unrealistically low. “It’s absurd to expect anyone, let alone a working family, to afford the cost of living today,” he said. It’s an issue both Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Michael Bloomberg have championed recently. “The cost of living in New York City, like nearly everywhere else, has gone up,” Bloomberg said during his annual State of the City address. “And not just housing, but food, transit and all the key parts of a family’s budget. But there’s one thing that, in all fairness, hasn’t gone up: The ability of those at the bottom of the economic ladder to pay for those essential needs.”  

To keep a hold of your finances, contact your local insurance agent today!
This article courtesy of CBSNewYork  

Call us today and put our expertise to work for you!

PMC Insurance Group (P) 877-PMC-COMP (P) 781-449-7744 (F) 781-449-7889
www.pmcinsurance.com info@pmcinsurance.com

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To contact us, and for more information, please visit our CompleteMarkets storefront.


Internal Investigations Can Reduce Claims, Costs

Author DavidMalloy , 3/19/2012
Ask the Workers' Comp Expert: Internal Investigations Can Reduce Claims, Costs
by Robert G. Jones, Vice President, PMC Insurance Group Recent

PMC Insurance Group"Ask the Expert" columns addressed certain aspects of return-to-work programs. Today, we address strengths and flaws within a workers’ compensation program focusing on reducing the number of claims and overall cost.

The number of lost time claims is a key metric and should be reviewed at least annually. If this number exceeds 25 percent of total claims, further investigation is recommended. Another important metric is the number of claims that are litigated. If this number exceeds 20 percent of all claims, a comprehensive internal investigation is necessary. Business owners experiencing significant numbers of lost time and/or litigated claims need to examine the root cause(s) driving these adverse claims results.

The business owner should review the following as a part of an internal investigation:

  • Is the hiring process effective in screening prospective employees? Background checks and drug testing at minimum.
  • Are supervisors trained and accountable to build high performing teams that integrate workplace safety into job duties? Personal responsibility and employee morale are key components.
  • How quickly are workers’ compensation claims reported to the insurance company? Within 24 hours is the goal.
  • Are accidents and incidents investigated with findings documented and acted upon? How the business owner responds is an important component of organizational culture.
  • Is communication with injured employees consistent and supportive? The goal being an early and successful return to work.
  • Are wellness programs integrated into work activity? Tracking and communicating results reinforces the business owner’s commitment to a safe and healthy work environment.

PMC Insurance Group’s only business is workers’ compensation. Our insurance professionals have extensive experience helping IIABNY members expand their marketing capabilities by providing workers’ compensation solutions for their clients, including offering guidelines  to help business owners reduce the number of claims and overall cost.    

Call us today and put our expertise to work for you!

PMC Insurance Group (P) 877-PMC-COMP (P) 781-449-7744 (F) 781-449-7889
www.pmcinsurance.com info@pmcinsurance.com

1

 
To contact us, and for more information, please visit our CompleteMarkets storefront.

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