North Carolina Considers Cap on Workers’ Compensation for Retirees

May 12, 2009

The North Carolina House Insurance Committee has advanced a measure that would limit workers’ compensation payments to injured workers a few years after they become eligible for Social Security.

The bill (HB 1022) would curtail workers’ compensation payments 300 weeks after a worker turns 65 or otherwise becomes eligible for Social Security retirement benefits, unless the worker wins an appeal before a state board.

Supporters believe the measure would cut costs for employers and make North Carolina more competitive.

Opponents argue it would hurt senior citizens.

The insurance panel sent the measure to the House Judiciary Committee for further review. A companion bill (S 975) is before the Senate Commerce Committee.

The issue has surfaced elsewhere. The Utah Supreme Court recently declared unconstitutional a state law that limited workers’ compensation payments for people over age 65 who also can collect Social Security retirement benefits.

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