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Dec. 28, 2007

L&I's workers' comp rate holiday to end at midnight Monday

TUMWATER – The six-month rate holiday, during which employers and workers will have saved $315 million in workers’ compensation premiums, will end with the arrival of the New Year on Monday night.

For work performed on Jan. 1 and beyond, employers should resume deducting the worker’s share of the Medical Aid Fund premium from their employee’s paychecks.

The partial rate holiday, which began July 1, was made possible by higher-than-expected investment earnings and the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) continued success at managing health care costs for injured workers. L&I’s annual health care inflation rate averages 5.9 percent compared with a 7.7 percent annual average for the nation’s workers’ comp insurers.

Employers who want to know about how the end of the rate holiday will affect them can click on the rate holiday Web site or call their L&I Account Manager. His or her phone number is on each employer’s most recent quarterly statement.

L&I manages the state’s workers’ compensation system, which insurers about 2.5 million workers and 168,000 employers. That represents about 70 percent of the state’s workforce. The other 30 percent work for employers who self-insure.

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For media information: Robert T. Nelson, L&I, 360-902-6043 or nelq235@Lni.wa.gov, or visit the L&I News and Media Center at www.Lni.wa.gov/News.

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