Illinois was named the No. 7 costliest workers’ comp state in the 2014 Oregon Workers’ Compensation Premium Rate Ranking Summary. The manner by which Illinois handles causation is one of the reasons for our state’s high workers’ compensation premiums. Currently, Illinois has a 1 percent causation standard, meaning that if the workplace is responsible for the injury in any way, the employer pays 100% of the damage award.
The SBAC and several coalition partners are advocating for a workers’ compensation proposal that charges arbitrators with apportioning damages and compensating injured workers to the extent a work-related accident caused their injuries. For example, if an arbitrator determines 20% of an injury was caused by a work related incident and 80% was caused by other factors, the employer would be responsible for 20% of the award for damages. If an arbitrator determines that an injury was 80% attributed to a work injury, and 20% to other factors, the employer would be responsible for 80% of the damages award. More than half the states have adopted percentage-based or proportional causation systems.
The SBAC will look to collaborate with other stakeholders interested in bi-partisan workers compensation reform whether it is through this legislation or other policy proposals.
This legislation was filed in the Senate on February 15, 2018, but no further action was taken.
[100th GA Legislation: SB3091]