Wholesaler gets down to nuts & bolts with a Return-To-Work program



The company, a wholesaler specializing in mailing parts, employs 50 workers.


Traditionally, the company had a low Experience Mod, but was now looking at a potential leap from .92 to 1.15. The company did not understand the reasons for the significant jump.


CWCAs determined that the projected increase was the result of a handful of injury claims in which workers were taking several weeks to return to work. One claim, in particular, was driving the increased cost. An employee, who suffered a hand injury, was undergoing surgery. The doctor, unaware of any type of return-to-work policy, prescribed four weeks out of work. The insurance company added the estimated cost to the claim reserve.

Since reserves are treated in the same way as costs incurred, this was the wake-up call to the employer, who had previously felt he was “saving money” by having Workers’ Compensation pay his employee. He was unaware of the financial implications for his company due to the indemnity payments for the time away from work.


The CWCA worked closely with the company to give them a better understanding of the impact of the lack of a light duty return to work policy and helped them establish a Return-To-Work program. This turned the previous ‘discretional’ medical disability into ‘no’ disability allowing the injured worker to return to light duty within days of her surgery.


As a result of the CWCA’s actions, the company avoided having a $5,000 premium increase and stopped a potential 10% increase on its Experience Mod.


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