Important Workers’ Comp Update for Private Employers
E-mployment Alert March 22, 2021
Ohio Industrial Commission to Begin Video Hearings
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Industrial Commission has been conducting administrative hearings by telephone on what is described as a “bridge line.” There have been numerous connection problems with this format, including random “dead spots” during some hearings. The Commission recently announced that, by mid-April, it will transition to a “web conferencing solution” offered by Webex to conduct hearings. This virtual format, similar to Zoom, will permit the parties to participate by video, which is certainly a preferred method when receiving testimony from witnesses. Participants who do not have a computer or Internet access can continue to participate by telephone.
Additional information regarding this new format can be found at ic.ohio.gov/webex/.
Private State-Fund Employers Receive Premium Rate Reduction
The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation recently announced that private state-fund employers can expect a premium rate reduction of 7.1% (approximately $71.5 million) beginning July 1, 2021, the start of the 2021 policy year. This represents the fourth consecutive premium reduction since 2018 and the twelfth since 2008. The Bureau’s announcement can be found here.