HB207 Changes Employer’s Liability for Certain Motor Vehicle Accident Claims
Kegler Brown E-mployment Alert July 18, 2016
Smart Summary for Employers
- Amended Substitute House Bill No. 207 creates a new statute addressing state-fund workers’ compensation claims resulting from motor vehicle accidents
- It allows the costs of the claim to be charged to the surplus fund if a cited third party’s insurance or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage covers the claim
- Statute becomes effective July 1, 2017
- It also amends existing statute to remove the 500 employee requirement for employers seeking self-insured status
The Ohio General Assembly has enacted legislation that would permit the entire cost of workers’ compensation claims arising from certain motor vehicle accidents to be charged to the surplus fund. Amended Substitute House Bill No. 207 created a new statutory section addressing workers’ compensation claims in which subrogation from a third party is likely.
Ohio Revised Code Section 4123.932, which goes into effect July 1, 2017, provides that all compensation and benefits paid in a workers’ compensation claim can be charged to the surplus fund, and not to an individual employer’s experience, under the following circumstances:
- The employer is state funded;
- The claim is based upon a motor vehicle accident involving a third party;
- The third party is cited for the accident; and
- Any form of insurance maintained by the third party or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage covers the claim.
An employer may apply to the Administrator of the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation to have a claim meeting this criteria be charged to the surplus fund. The Administrator has 180 days in which to respond to the application. If the Administrator fails to respond in that time, the claim will be charged to the surplus fund.
This provision may provide significant relief to employers who have employees injured in motor vehicle accidents.
Am. Sub. H.B. No. 207 also amends Ohio Revised Code Section 4123.35(B) to remove the 500 employee requirement for employers seeking self-insured status. This requirement was often waived by the Bureau so long as other financial concerns were met by the employer applicant.