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MA Workers Comp Rates For Contractors May Go Up, Retroactively!

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Sun, Jan 26,2014 @ 09:00 AM

MA Workers Comp Rates For Contractors May Go Up, Retroactively!

Workers compensation rates in MA



The Workers Compensation Rates and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts (WCRIBMA) submitted a rate filing on December 27, 2013 to the Division of Insurance on behalf of its members recommending a 7.7% increase in average rates for industrial classes. Workers compensation rates for construction workers fall under the industrial classes. 

So if the rate hike is approved contractors can expect their workers compensation premiums to increase. Using some quick math that means for classification code #5403, Carpentry- not otherwise classified, the rate for a carpenter being paid $25.00/hr will increase by about $.74/hr, or a total increase of about $1539.00 for the full year (2080 hours). 

That should help motivate contractors to add employees and help stimulate the economy...  Ready for more good news?


If you build anything they will come wr

Paying more is one thing, how about having to pay retroactively!

The proposed effective date of the rate filing is January 1, 2014. That means if the rate hike is approved as submitted insurance companies will be able to retroactively charge contractors the new rate all the way back to the first of the year.  Again, using some quick math, if for example the rate hike is approved as of March 1st, 2014, that means for a $25/hr carpenter under classification code #5403 the retroactive premium for January and February would be just under $255.00

Workers Compensation Rates and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts

WC Code #5403 current rate: 9.61/$100 of payroll

WC Code #5403 proposed new rate: 10.35/$100 of payroll


Here’s the message the WCRIB is suggesting insurance carriers send out with all new and renewal policies:

“A filing is being considered by the Massachusetts Division of Insurance which may result in premiums different from those shown on the policy.   If it does, we will issue an endorsement to show the new premiums and their effective date.”


If you don’t like it you can speak your mind

WCRIBMA Hearing about workers comp ratesA Hearing on the Rate Filing will be held at 10:00AM on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at the Division of Insurance, 1000 Washington Street, Boston, MA.  For more information you can refer to Circular Letter #2230 and Circular Letter #2231 for details.

If you go, can you please ask if they will also write into the changes that contractors can retroactively bill their customers for the increase as well, and that all customers must pay the increase within 30 days of receiving the invoice from their contractor….?


If you plan to attend the hearing

Any person who wishes to participate as an interested party in this hearing must comply with the procedures set forth in 211 CMR 110.05 (3).  Persons who wish to present unsworn oral or written statements at the January 30, 2014 hearing are asked to submit a notice of intent to comment no later than January 28, 2014. All other persons who wish to speak will be heard after those who notify the Division in advance.


It pays to be a NARI Member

EM NARI MemberI want to thank fellow EMNARI Member Tom Messier of Mason and Mason Insurance for making me aware of this so I could share it with you.  I have known Tom for over 15 years. One reason I continue to do business with him is because he proactively shares this kind of important information with me and the other contractors he works with.  Tom also shared with me that the state has not seen rate increases since 2001.  Maybe that makes us lucky.  They did try to increase the rates by 14% two years ago, but the increase was denied.  He also shared that in the past the rate increases typically have taken place on September 1st of the year they were approved. 




Topics: Production Considerations, Estimating Considerations, Insurance Considerations, Workers Compensation