Workers’ Compensation in Illinois
In 2011, at the strong request of Business and Insurance Companies a Workers’ Compensation “Reform” package was signed into law, aimed at lowering costs for employers in Illinois. Instead, the insurance industry has pocketed enormous profits and has not passed any savings along to employers. Any further changes in laws should instead look to promote insurance premium transparency and oversight – not further sacrifices by injured workers.
- The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI – an insurance industry rate making agency which provides workers’ compensation data) has issued its workers’ compensation advisory rates for 2020. It states that Illinois employers should see a 5.1 percent cut in their workers’ compensation insurance premiums in 2020 – this is the seventh consecutive rate reduction that has been recommended.1
- Since the 2011 “reforms,” the NCCI has recommended a total 56.5 percent rate reduction for Illinois insurance premiums. Insurance companies have not followed these advised rate reductions and Illinois has no law requiring insurance companies to pass along these savings to employers.
- The biannual Oregon Workers’ Compensation Premium Rate Ranking Summary ranked Illinois as 22nd in the nation for workers’ compensation premium costs in 2018. This is down 14 spots from the 2016 study, and one of the largest drops in the country.2
- Profits in the insurance workers’ compensation market in Illinois have significantly increased since 2011. In 2017 alone, insurers had a 23.1 percent profit margin and made over $600 million in earnings.3
- Between 2013 and 2017, Illinois experienced a 12.4 percent decrease in total benefits paid, the fifth largest decrease in the country and is most likely attributable to the changes implemented in 2011.4
- The number of new workers’ compensation cases filed in Illinois is on a steady decline, down 24 percent since 2011.5
- There are 339 insurance companies competing for and writing workers compensation insurance in our state. Illinois is tied with Pennsylvania for having the most insurers in the nation.6
1 National Council on Compensation Insurance. https://www.ncci.com/Articles/Documents/II_StateAdvisoryForumState_IL_2019.pdf
2 Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. https://www.oregon.gov/dcbs/reports/Documents/general/prem-sum/18-2082.pdf
3 National Association of Insurance Commissioners 2017 Profitability Report found at: https://www.naic.org/prod_serv/PBL-PB-18.pdf
4 National Academy of Social Insurance. Workers’ Compensation: Benefits, Coverage, and Costs. October 2019 found at: https://www.nasi.org/sites/default/files/nasiRptWkrsComp201710_31%20final.pdf
5 State of Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission Annual Reports found at: https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/iwcc/about/Pages/annualreport.aspx
6 Illinois Department of Insurance 2018 Workers’ Compensation Insurance Oversight Report. https://insurance.illinois.gov/wcfu/2018WorkCompReportFinalParta.pdf
PDF Fact Sheet: Workers’ Compensation in Illinois