Ontario’s WSIB cuts employer premium rates by almost 30 per cent
By P&PC Staff
By P&PC Staff
September 28, 2018 – The Ontario Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) and the provincial government have announced that the WSIB has paid off its unfunded liability, which will lead to a 29.8 per cent cut in employer premium rates by January 1, 2019.
The unfunded liability, which stood at $14.2 billion in 2011, is the difference between future obligations to pay injured workers and the money available to pay them. WSIB was a unique case, as private insurance companies are not permitted to have a “cushion” in the event they go bankrupt.
The government and the WSIB say that eliminating the unfunded liability helps employers put money back into the economy and ensures an accountable workplace safety and insurance system.
But critics say that the move hurts workers, saying they may receive less benefits as a result of the loss of the pool. The WSIB maintains that the government determines the benefits to workers, not the board itself.
The unfunded liability was due to be paid off by 2027, and the WSIB says it was able achieve its goal 10 years ahead of schedule through collection of premiums and a reduction in number of overall claims.
The 2019 average premium rate will decrease from $2.35 to $1.65.