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For the seventh consecutive year, workers compensation insurance rates for most Tennessee employers will decline next year.

The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance said Tuesday that premium rates for workers comp will drop next March, reflecting another 7.1 loss cost estimate by insurance regulators. The cut will bring the loss cost reductions to less than half of what they were in 2014 when Tennessee revamped its worker compensation rules at the urging of then Gov. Bill Haslam.

"The continued decline in workers' compensation premiums highlights Tennessee's focus on creating an environment where businesses can grow, employees can prosper, and our state can continue to attract companies and high-paying jobs," Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee said in a statement Tuesday.

The new filing reflects a continuing trend of reduced workers' compensation costs for employers since the Tennessee General Assembly changed the state's workers 'comp rules and moved to an administrative, rather than a judicial, process of paying claims for workers who are injured on the job. Prior to those reforms, businesses complained that Tennessee had some of the most expensive workers' comp insurance rates in the country.

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Hodgen Mainda / Photo contributed by TN Department of Commerce & Insurance

Tennessee Insurance Commissioner Hodgen Mainda recently approved a 7.1 percent overall decrease for 2020. The National Council on Compensation Insurance initially recommended a decrease of 9.5% based upon ratings and losses in the past year, but the rate reduction was trimmed when new medical payment rates were later adopted and limited some of the projected savings going forth. The Advisory Council

"These reductions are great news for Tennessee employers, employees, and our rural communities," Mainda said. "The reductions mean employers may now have more money to invest into their businesses and employees, which will, in turn, benefit local communities and continue to enhance the Volunteer State's ability to recruit companies and talent."

Insurance carriers combine the National Council on Compensation Insurance loss cost filings with company experience and expenses to develop full insurance rates.

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