Thursday, January 25, 2007

Time to Crack Down on Workers' Comp Cheats

A new study from the Fiscal Policy Institute (pdf of the study here) lays out a straightforward way to cut workers' comp premiums and increase benefits for injured workers (hat tip to the NY Times). How?

By enforcing the law and cracking down on tax cheat companies that don't pay their full workers' comp premiums, New York state would raise $500 million to $1 billion a year. That's how much cheating companies are costing the system. Statewide, the missing money comes out to between 15 percent and 20 percent of yearly workers' comp premiums.

This study makes it clear that the first step in any proposed reform of worker's comp needs to be enforcing the law. From the study's conclusion:
"It is up to government to police the labor market and employer labor practices just as government must police the streets to maintain public safety. In New York, government has failed to do that.
. . .
Now, New York State needs an aggressive effort to combat workers' compensation employer fraud connected to both general non-compliance and to the growing employer practice of misclassifying workers as independent contractors. Reform of the workers' compensation system should include institution of an aggressive enforcement effort to combat employer fraud."
Technorati tags:

No comments: