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For immediate release: May 21, 2015

Inaction could leave Ohio employers ineligible for $1.2 billion workers' comp credit

Time remains to ensure eligibility for 8 months of premium coverage

COLUMBUS - Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) Administrator/CEO Steve Buehrer today reminded Ohio employers they must take action now to ensure they receive their portion of the $1.2 billion premium credit BWC will issue this summer as it updates its billing system. Private employers in an active status are eligible to receive a credit for eight months of workers' compensation coverage as part of BWC's switch to prospective billing. Since active status includes being up-to-date on payments, Buehrer also announced that BWC would establish payment plans for companies wishing to come into compliance and be eligible for the credit.

"We want to give employers every opportunity to receive eight months of free workers' comp coverage, so we're even allowing those employers that have fallen behind on payments to receive the credit if they set up a payment plan," said Buehrer. "We encourage Ohio employers to review their policies and take action if necessary, and at the same time familiarize themselves with the new billing process so they're prepared when the new system is in place."

Under the new system, effective July 1 for private employers, businesses will be billed prior to receiving coverage instead of the current practice of billing employers in arrears. Designed to prevent double billing during the transition, the credit will result in BWC paying businesses' previous six months coverage, or final payroll report, under the old system, as well as 1/6th of their policy year 2015 premium due. Private employers' first payment under prospective billing will be due August 31.

To receive the credit, employers must be in active status by July 1. Employers with lapsed coverage must take the following steps to ensure eligibility for the transition credit:

  • Report unreported payroll for currently lapsed payroll periods;
  • Pay any outstanding premium, late fees and penalties for assessed premium, or;
  • Request a payment plan for any premium amounts that cannot be paid in full.
Policyholders no longer operating their business should also provide the date their operations ceased, so BWC can cancel the policy and resolve any outstanding issues.

BWC continues to offer free prospective billing webinars and seminars across the state to provide details and answer questions about prospective billing. More information is available at bwc.ohio.gov. Employers with questions can call 1-800-644-6292 or email bwcprospectivebilling@bwc.state.oh.us.

Information on the move to prospective billing for public employers, which becomes effective January 1, 2016, is also available at bwc.ohio.gov.

The next meeting of the BWC Board of Directors is scheduled for Friday, June 26, 2015.

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