Along with being our lead MSA expert, Shawn R. Biery also manages and maintains a free IL WC rate sheet that is easy to read and works as a great desk reference for adjusters and risk managers. Shawn works hard to keep it accurate and up-to-date for our clients and readers. If you want one with the new published rates, simply email Shawn at email@example.com and he will send it either via email or print/send/mail in full color.
It is hard to believe but in the past two years while we have all been worried about the economy and the “state” of this state, PPD benefit rates have been silently growing and the IWCC recently published new rates with not one but two retroactive changes to the PPD maximum rates. We find it impossible to believe the Illinois average weekly wage is climbing and truly feel someone has to look into how the calculations are performed. Please note the Commission’s website is contradicting itself by saying there were no AWW increases but they are increasing the rates any way.
Check your high wage rate files—the PPD maximums are different going all the way back to July 2010 now. Now that they have been posted the new PPD maximum rates, you have to retroactively change all reserves to reflect the new PPD rates. You will not be able to get settlement contracts approved using the old PPD rates for files affected by this change.
· THE STATUTORY MAXIMUM PPD RATE FROM JULY 2010 to JUNE 30, 2011 WAS NOW RETROACTIVELY CHANGED TO $669.64.
· THE STATUTORY MAXIMUM PPD RATE FROM JULY 2011 to PRESENT WAS NOW RETROACTIVELY CHANGED TO $695.78.
Curiously, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission’s website still has the listing for those periods to explain there was no change in the maximums for the period where they now list changes. As we outline above, the website says no increases occurred to the Statewide Average Weekly Wage—someone, somewhere might be able to explain this but we have received no comment so far. For reference the IWCC website still says:
· ** As provided in Section 8(b)4, there is no increase in the maximum benefit rates for 7/15/10 - 1/14/11 because the CY SAWW decreased.
· ^ As provided in Section 8(b)4, there is no increase in the maximum benefit rates for 1/15/11 - 7/14/11 because there was no increase in the SAWW since 7/15/09 - 1/14/10.
Those notes are obviously incorrect since they have increased maximum benefits rates for both of those periods now. With respect to the recent changes, it is this type of retroactive increase to costs placed solely upon Illinois employers which provides fuel for the organizations which point to Illinois as an example of states which are unfriendly to business.
We welcome your thoughts and comments. Please feel free to post them on our award-winning blog or you can LiveChat about it—information on LiveChat is on our website; see below. This article was researched and written by Gene Keefe, J.D. & Shawn R. Biery, J.D., MSSC. For a free and updated copy of Shawn’s Illinois WC Rate Sheet, please email Shawn at firstname.lastname@example.org.