Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Predicts Drop in Workers' Compensation Rates

The Oklahoma state insurance commissioner said recently that workers' compensation insurance rates for state businesses should drop in 2012, according to a Bloomberg Businessweek report.

Insurance Commissioner John Doak said the Insurance Department this week approved a filing by the National Council on Compensation calling for a decrease in a significant component of the workers' compensation insurance rate.

According to Mr. Doak, the decrease comes as the result of legislative changes to the workers' compensation approved by lawmakers this year. The Legislature rewrote Oklahoma's workers' compensation laws in 2011, instating a 5 percent reduction in the fee schedule for medical reimbursement rates and requiring physicians and the court to follow a nationally recognized set of "best practice" treatment guidelines.

The two changes are expected to reduce workers' compensation rates significantly.

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