Monday, June 10, 2019

COLA RATE FOR 2020 ESTABLISHED - NEW MAXIMUM AND MINIMUM RATES

MEMORANDUM


TO:                         All Workers’ Compensation Insurance Carriers, Adjusters and Self-Insureds

FROM:                  J. Stephen Monahan, Director
                                Workers’ Compensation and Safety Division

DATE:                    June 7, 2019

SUBJECT:             Annual Adjustment of Workers’ Compensation Benefits
 



The new Form 28(FY20) and the Form 28A(FY20), which you should use to update claimant’s rates as of July 1, 2019, are now available.  You can download both forms from our web site at:  http://labor.vermont.gov/forms/#comp.  Please make copies as needed.

The new maximum for those injuries arising after June 30, 1986 is $1,353.00.  The new maximum for injuries prior to that date is $902.00.  The minimum in all cases is $451.00.

Please be aware of the requirement to forward a copy of the Form 28 to the injured worker or dependent.

The multiplier for FY 2020 is 1.032.

Monday, January 28, 2019

VERMONT WORKERS' COMPENSATION ADJUSTERS' CONFERENCE - JUNE 13, 14, 2019!!!

The Vermont Workers' Compensation Adjusters' Conference will be held on June 13 and 14, 2019 at the Hilton Hotel, located in Burlington, Vermont.

To register for the conference please use the following link:   http://www.cvent.com/d/86q8wj/4W

SAVE THE DATE!!!  For anyone who wants to visit Vermont in the fall, the Fall Conference will be held on November 7 and 8, 2019.  More details to follow. 

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Mileage Reimbursement Rate Increase, Effective January 1, 2019


Effective January 1, 2019 the Workers’ Compensation mileage reimbursement rate increased from $.545 to $.58 per mile.  The mileage reimbursement rate as determined by Rule 4.1310 is for mileage traveled for medical treatment, to attend an employer’s independent medical examination or attend a vocational rehabilitation meeting.  The rate is the rate that is in effect for classified state employees. 

                This rate became effective January 1, 2019.


Friday, November 9, 2018

ATTENTION!!! Proposed Vocational Rule WITHDRAWN by Department of Labor!!!!!


We received the below Memorandum today regarding the proposed vocational rule.  Please note that the proposed rule has been withdrawn by the Department of Labor, and the current vocational rehabilitation rule remains effective.  We will update the blog if there are future developments in this matter.


MEMORANDUM
To:                   Charlene Dindo, Committee Assistant - LCAR;
Louise Corliss, APA Clerk – Vermont Secretary of State’s Office
From:               J. Stephen Monahan – Director Workers’ Compensation & Safety Division
Date:               Friday, November 9, 2018
Subject:             Notification that we are withdrawing proposed rule 18-P23 - Department of Labor/Vermont Workers' Compensation Vocational Rehabilitation Rules
After the aborted LCAR hearing on October 18, the Department of Labor met with opponents of the proposed rule to discuss their concerns. Unfortunately, we were unable to come to agreement on the rules, although there was some agreement that statutory changes may be necessary.
The Department has decided to withdraw the proposed rule and leave the existing rule in place. Therefore, it will not be necessary for LCAR to consider the rule at its November 15th meeting.
Thank you for your time.

J. Stephen Monahan
Director, Workers’ Compensation & Safety Division
Vermont Department of Labor
5 Green Mountain Drive
P.O. Box 488
Montpelier, Vermont 05601-0488
(802) 828-2138

Friday, June 8, 2018

JULY 1, 2018 COLA INCREASE RATE SET AND UPDATE ON ATTORNEY FEES

The Department of Labor posted today the updated COLA rate increase that takes effect on July 1, 2018.  The increase is 1.023% for fiscal year 2019.  The new minimum is $437.00, and the new maximum rate is $1,311.00.  You can find the new Form 28/28A on the Department of Labor's website at: http://labor.vermont.gov/forms/#comp .

You can find the updated historical rates chart at: http://labor.vermont.gov/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/historicalrates.pdf .

The Department of Labor also updated the attorney fee rate for fiscal year 2019.  The rate increased from $205.00 to $210.00 for 2018, effective on July 1, 2018.  The paralegal rate remains at $75.00, and the vocational rehabilitation rate remains at $95.00.  The updated amounts can be found here: http://labor.vermont.gov/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/Attorney-VR-Fee.pdf .

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Workers' Compensation Medical Marijuana Formal Hearing Decision


The Vermont Department of Labor has issued a decision regarding medical marijuana reimbursement.   Michael Hall v. Safelite Group Inc., Op. No. 06-18WC (2018).  The Department found that even though, under the facts in this specific case, the medical marijuana was reasonable and necessary treatment,  the carrier was not required to reimburse the claimant for medical marijuana.  The Department held that 18 V.S.A. 4474c(b)(4) controlled as the more specific statute. Other states ordering reimbursement  did not have a similar language prohibiting the reimbursement, therefore, under the state statutory structure, the Department could not order the carrier to reimburse the claimant for medical marijuana.  

Monday, February 12, 2018

Mileage Rate Increase Effective January 1, 2018

Effective January 1, 2018, the Workers’ Compensation mileage reimbursement rate increased from $.535 to $.545 per mile.  The mileage reimbursement rate, as determined by Rule 4.1310, is for mileage traveled for medical treatment, to attend an employer’s independent medical examination or attend a vocational rehabilitation meeting.  The rate is the rate that is in effect for classified state employees.

Per the changes to the Rules in 2015, you can no longer deduct the mileage traveled to/from work from the reimbursable mileage.

The Department of Labor's Mileage and Meal Reimbursement table is now updated with the 2018 information.  The table can be found at: http://labor.vermont.gov/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/Mileage-and-Meals-Reimbursement-Rates.pdf