The rate filing was submitted to the Division on December 22, 2017
On December 22, 2017, the the Workers’ Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts’ (“WCRIBMA”) submitted a rate filing with the Division of Insurance seeking a statewide average decrease in workers’ compensation rates of 11.1 percent effective July 1, 2018.
It has been just a year since the last time the WCRIBMA submitted a rate filing to the Division which sought a rate increase.
In response, on January 3, 2017, the Massachusetts Division of Insurance announced that it has scheduled a hearing for January 29th, at 10:00 a.m., to consider whether or not to approve the WCRIBMA’s rate filing.
For those unfamiliar with the WCRIBMA, or officially the Workers’ Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts, it is an unincorporated association licensed as a rating organization pursuant to M.G. L. c. 152 §52C, for a general revision of workers’ compensation insurance risks and premiums. In 2017, former Commissioner of Insurance Daniel Judson took over the one hundred and one year old rating bureau.
More details on the WCRIBMA Rate Filing Hearing
In accordance with Massachuetts General Law c. 152, §53A, the Commissioner of Insurance is authorized to hold a hearing upon the submission of a rate filing “…to afford all interested persons an opportunity to provide evidence and testimony relating to the proposed workers’ compensation classifications, risks and rates so that the Commissioner can determine whether the proposed classifications and rates are excessive, inadequate, or unfairly discriminatory for the risks to which they apply and whether they fall within a range of reasonableness.”[pullquote]The WCRIB is requesting a statewide average rate decrease of 11.1 percent with an effective date of July 1, 2018[/pullquote]
For those who are interested in reviewing the actual rate filing
For Massachusetts insurance professionals interested in reviewing the WCRIBMA’s rate filing for themselves, all of the proposed rates and supporting documentation is available for inspection at the Division’s offices during its normal business hours. In addition, Agency Checklists’ readers interested in reviewing the WCRIB filing may use this link: WCRIB December 22, 2017 Filing.
The WCRIB filing consists of 822 pages and includes pre-filed direct testimony supporting the filing from:
- David Appel, a Principal and Director of Economics Consulting with the firm of Milliman, Inc., one of the nation’s largest independently owned consulting firms specializing in the areas of risk and insurance.
- Robert Frederick Conger, a consulting actuary in the Insurance, Consulting and Technology line of business with Willis Towers Watson. Mr. Conger’s consulting practice covers the full range of issues facing property/casualty insurers, with a particular expertise in the workers’ compensation line.
- Claudia B. Cunniff, an Assistant Vice President and Actuary at the WCRIB.
- Anthony Salido, Data Operations Director / Actuary at the WCRIB, and,
- Sharon Tennyson, an economist and Professor of Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University, whose particular area of expertise is in the industrial organization and regulation of insurance markets.
The remaining sections of the filing are divided into three parts:
- The first is the main rate level filing, with explanatory text and actuarial exhibits underlying the calculation of the average rate indication.
- The second contains the rate level indication for F-Classes, revised Experience and Retrospective Rating Plan parameters, miscellaneous rating values, and classification rate displays.
- The third addresses cost containment.
Based on the filing’s content, the WCRIBMA has submitted that the rates it recommends are neither excessive nor inadequate; they are not unfairly discriminatory; and they fall within a range of reasonableness such that the Commissioner should approve them after hearing.
A look at all of the WCRIBMA rate filings since 1988
The Rating Bureau also has provided an informative chart outlining all of the Approved Rate Changes since 1988, which we have reprinted below:
How to participate in the Division of Insurance Rate Filing Hearing
Interested individuals who would like to submit testimony or to participate in the Division’s Rate Filing hearing must comply with certain procedures which the DOI has set forth in 211 CMR 110.05 (3).
For those who wish to submit unsworn oral or written statements during the January 29th hearing, the Division requires a notice of intent to comment from such persons no later than January 25, 2018. Anyone else interested in speaking at the hearing will be heard only after those who have first notified the Division by the deadline have spoken.
If an individual or party is interested in submitting data to be reviewed during the hearing, a hard copy of such data should be filed with the DOI no later than January 22, 2018. All notices and documents should be sent to the following:
Any and all notices and submissions must be sent to the Docket Clerk, Hearings and Appeals, Division of Insurance, 1000 Washington Street, 8th Floor, Boston, Massachusetts. Please remember that any and all submissions should reference Docket No. R2017-01. Notices of intent to comment also may be sent by electronic mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
View an official copy of the Division of Insurance’s Notice of Hearing
Here is a screenshot of the official notice on the Division of Insurance’s website: