Improved safety performance in Saskatchewan positively impacts 2015 premium rates

The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) has proposed a 3.3 per cent drop to its 2014 average premium rate, from $1.51 to $1.46 per hundred dollars of payroll.

The rate reduction is the eighth straight drop to the average premium rate and the lowest rate proposal since 1986. Saskatchewan’s preliminary 2015 average employer premium is 28.8 per cent below the 12-year high of $2.05 in 2004.

This premium rate reduction is a direct result of fewer injuries, growing payroll and effective return-to-work programs, according to WCB CEO Peter Federko.

“In 2013, 86 per cent of Saskatchewan employers achieved Mission: Zero. There were over 38,000 workplaces with zero workplace injuries,” Federko said. “However, trends can quickly become reversed. While our total injury rate continues to decline, we are forecasting a slight increase in time loss claims in 2014. This is a good reminder that, while premium rates are declining, we cannot become complacent when it comes to injury prevention.”

Highlights of the 2015 rate proposal:

• Premiums for 37,060 employers in 33 rate codes will drop. This represents 79 per cent of employers registered with the WCB. The decreases range from 0.5 to 14.5 per cent. The average decrease is 5.4 per cent.
• Premiums for 5,066 employers in 12 rate codes will increase next year. This represents 11 per cent of registered employers. All increases are under 10.5 per cent. The average increase is 3.9 per cent.
• Premiums for employers in five rate codes remain the same.
• For the third consecutive year, no industry rate code has increases over 10.5 per cent.