For carpal tunnel claims after June 28, 2011 and all other injuries from September 1st on, new laws are in place for workers’ compensation claims.  One of the new rules is that the AMA settlement guidelines, which screw workers, have to be considered as part of the settlement process.  It’s not the only factor or the main factor, but some attorneys have been worried about how this will effect the value of claims for their clients.

We don’t really know the answer, but according to a national insurance company organization, the NCCI, the value of cases in Illinois should not go down much, if any.  They recently produced a memo on the topic.  Here is a summary from the Chamber of Commerce.

The NCCI has provided its analysis of savings on HB 1698, the legislation signed into law by Gov. Quinn on June 28th. Their analysis found an average overall system savings of 8.8% or approximately $264 million annually.

Medical Fee Schedule (8.2) (effective September 1, 2011)

-7.4%

Wage Differential Benefits (effective September 1, 2011)

-0.8%

Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) Benefits for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome claims (8e) (effective June 28, 2011)

-0.6%

Overall Impact on Illinois WC System Costs

-8.8%

As you can see, while they expect payments to doctors per case to go down by a bunch, they do not expect the permanent partial disability payments to be dropped very much and it’s our contention that they should hardly drop at all as well, if any.

Again, we’ll find out for sure soon enough, but considering that insurance companies aren’t expecting a big drop behind closed doors, I don’t know how they make a different argument to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.  But of course, that has never stopped them before.

We are workers’ compensation attorneys that help people with Illinois work injuries anywhere in IL via our statewide network of attorneys. Contact us and we will answer your questions or find the right lawyer for your situation.