The West Virginia Insurance Commission has released statistics indicating that more than $1.89 million in workers’ compensation payments are now outstanding from employers in the state. Notices asking 1,794 employers to pay up or face the consequences are now being mailed out.
West Virginia Insurance Commissioner, Jane L. Cline, issued a reminder to West Virginia employers last week saying they will be subject to penalties and repercussions if they fail to pay workers’ compensation premiums.
On Jan. 1 the policies of all West Virginia employers subscribing to the Workers’ Compensation Commission transferred to BrickStreet Insurance.
In mid January, 2,250 employers owed workers’ compensation premiums to BrickStreet Insurance. Statistics released Feb. 28 showed 1,794 employers whose premiums remain unpaid.
BrickStreet gave employers until Feb. 24 to be declared in policy default and placed on the Private Market Default List and be forced into the Uninsured Employers’ Fund. The commission encourages employers who have not complied to immediately contact BrickStreet Insurance to make payment arrangements.
“The Insurance Commission considers it absolutely critical that the exposure to the Uninsured Employers’ Fund be limited,” Cline said. “We continue to meet with other state licensing agencies to take coordinated action against business licenses and permits when an employer fails to maintain workers’ compensation coverage.”
The Insurance Commission may also take additional actions against uninsured employers such as imposing fines of up to $10,000, filing injunction complaints in Circuit Court to cease business operations, and taking appropriate action against company owners and officers.
The Insurance Commission emphasized that privatization of the workers’ compensation system is a very positive step for West Virginia’s business environment and will benefit all of its citizens; however, for the system to work it is imperative that employers do their part by complying with the law.
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