The New York Workers’ Compensation Alliance has released a White Paper authored by WCA Chair Robert Grey. The paper was cross-endorsed by the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) and the National Economic and Social Rights Initiative (NESRI).
The 2014 White Paper reviews the current legislative, regulatory and administrative status of the New York State workers’ compensation system. The system has undergone significant changes in the past two decades. There were major changes as a result of the reform legislation enacted in 2007. In addition, some trends that pre-dated the 2007 legislation have subsequently accelerated.
The paper considers developments in the workers’ compensation system over the past six years in three primary areas: (1) benefits for injured workers; (2) costs for employers; and (3) administration by the state (primarily by the Workers’ Compensation Board). It will address areas of improvement, stagnation, and deterioration in the system’s core mission of delivering compensation and medical benefits to injured workers.
The 2014 paper is the third in a series of papers released by the WCA and NYCOSH about the state of the system. Workers’ Compensation: State of the System, 2006 (“the 2006 White Paper”), was written to contribute to the discussion leading to the 2007 legislation. The 2006 White Paper identified the main problems in the New York workers’ compensation system as “the amount of benefits injured workers receive, delays in medical treatment, cost to employers, lack of transparency regarding insurance carrier financial information, and the state Workers’ Compensation Board’s administrative procedures.” The paper made a number of recommendations to resolve these problems.
Workers’ Compensation: State of the System, 2008 (“the 2008 White Paper”) reviewed the 2007 legislation and the Task Forces that were created to implement the statutory changes. The 2008 White Paper identified continuing problems in the system and made recommendations about modifying and implementing the legislation and the suggestions of the Task Forces.