WSIB promises transparent and accurate premiums

Published: April 30, 2019

Updated: June 3, 2019

Author: Luke Jones

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The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) of Ontario has announced a new system for how premium rates are assessed in the province. Speaking on Monday, WSIB chief financial officer Pamela Steer confirmed this is the first change to rate settings the board has made for over two decades.

A change is now possible thanks to the innovations made in technology, allowing big data and analytics to allow premium rates to be set. Steer says by leveraging technology, premiums now become more accurate and transparent.

Employers will now know and understand their rate and will not be greeted by unwelcome surprises further along into the group plan.

“So in the new scheme, we have 34 rate classes instead of 155 rate groups, but then within each class has employers based on their size, which tells us what we call predictability,” Steer explained. “But their size, their number of employees and their own risk will dictate how far from the median of that class’s average rate they will go.”

Steer points to an example. Large employers who respect their health and safety responsibilities and have few worker accidents will pay a significantly lower premium rate than the average employer. As for smaller companies, they will now have added protection through the WSIB collective liability employer insurance solution.

She also noted that smaller companies will be protected thanks to the collective liability concept of WSIB’s employer insurance.

“We’re going to provide them the rates they would eventually pay based on their current risk and experience to make it easier for all employers to get into this new system because we realize it’s a really big change,” said Steer.