WSIB (Ontario) Releases Final Premium Rates for 2008

TORONTO, July 27, 2007 – The WSIB has announced 2008 premium rates for Schedule 1 employers. It will maintain the average premium rate for 2008 at $2.26 per $100 of insurable earnings. This is unchanged from the 2007 and 2006 average premium rates. The WSIB Board of Directors’ decision to not increase the 2008 average premium rate is based on an expectation that health and safety and return-to-work outcomes in Ontario workplaces will continue to improve.

“We need to make responsible decisions on premium rates so that we can provide benefits for injured workers and survivors today, and for the future,” says Steve Mahoney, WSIB Chair. “We are pleased to see a continuing decline in lost-time injuries. However, the average cost of a claim is still increasing, and all of us must do more. For 2007, and again for 2008, we have been able to mitigate some of the average claim cost increase, but only to the point of being able to keep the average rate unchanged.”

The WSIB released preliminary 2008 premium rates in June to assist employers with their financial forecasting and budgeting for next year. In early July, the WSIB presented information sessions on 2008 premium rates for employers and their representatives. In making its decision on the final average rate for 2008, the WSIB Board of Directors considered stakeholder feedback provided in these sessions.

“By working together to improve prevention and return-to-work outcomes, system partners can further reduce the financial pressures on Ontario’s workplace safety and insurance system,” concludes Mahoney. “Improvements in these areas help the WSIB to contain system costs and address future financial pressures. If all partners in Ontario’s workplace safety and insurance system continue to achieve breakthroughs in health and safety and return to work, our goal of eliminating the unfunded liability by 2014 is still achievable.”

In the premium rates information sessions and when contacting employers who will be experiencing significant rate increases in 2008, the WSIB is promoting the range of resources available to employers to help them improve their prevention and return to work outcomes.

Based on the average 2008 premium rate, the WSIB has calculated 2008 premium rates for all employer rate groups. These are available on the WSIB website. The WSIB maximum insurable earnings ceiling for 2008 is $73,300.

Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) plays a key role in the province’s workplace health and safety system. The WSIB administers no-fault workplace insurance for employers and their workers and is committed to the elimination of workplace injuries and illnesses. The WSIB provides disability benefits, monitors the quality of healthcare, and assists in early and safe return to work for workers who are injured on the job or contract an occupational disease. More at http://www.wsib.on.ca