West Virginia Tabbed as Top State with Highest Workers’ Comp Cost Per Employee by UWC

December 2, 2003

The National Foundation for Unemployment & Workers’ Compensation (National Foundation) published its annual report on workers’ compensation in the United States, and reportedly finds West Virginia as the top ranked state with the highest Workers’ Compensation cost per covered employee. The National Foundation is the research arm of UWC – Strategic Services on Unemployment & Workers’ Compensation (UWC).

The report found that the average cost in West Virginia is $1,073, while across the nation the average is $350 per covered employee. The second highest state in the nation is California at $652, and surprisingly enough the surrounding states of West Virginia have averages significantly lower: Virginia $207, Kentucky $309, Maryland $343, Ohio $420, and Pennsylvania $448.

Mike Idleman, Assistant Vice President of GARMI, Inc., a third party administrator for workers’ compensation said, “We are not surprised that West Virginia is still the highest cost state in the nation for workers’ compensation costs. The law changes made by the legislature this year will take several years to realize their impact. In addition, the Supreme Court will hear several challenges to the new law, and will play a major role in the ultimate impact the new law will have on West Virginia’s workers’ compensation costs.” Idleman also said, “I am very optimistic about the current administration at the Workers’ Compensation Commission, headed by Executive Director Greg Burton. Greg has surrounded himself with some very talented people, who I believe will make a positive impact on the Commission.”

The National Foundation’s annual state workers’ compensation fiscal data report can be purchased by visiting their Web site, http://www.uwcstrategy.org/Bookshop/index.shtml.

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