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Policy decisions finalized at the October 11, 2012 WorkSafeBC Board of Directors meeting

The following decisions were finalized by WorkSafeBC's Board of Directors (“BOD”) in October, 2012. For information about the function and mandate of the BOD, please see Governing Structure.

Classification Policy Review

On October 11, 2012, the Board of Directors approved amendments to Items AP1-37-1, The Classification System, AP1-37-2, Classification — Multiple Industrial Activities, AP1-37-3, Classification — Changes, AP1-37-4 Classification — Consulting, and AP1-37-5, Deposit Accounts, of the Assessment Manual. The amendments introduce descriptions of key terms to the classification policies and consolidate policy direction on how to assign a classification unit to a firm.

You may examine the resolution (PDF 397kb) of the BOD. These amendments are effective January 1, 2013, and apply to all decisions made on or after January 1, 2013.

For further information on this issue, please contact Lori Guiton at 604 276-5160.

Section 251 Referral — Effective Date of Classification Changes

At its meeting on October 11, 2012, the Board of Directors of WorkSafeBC (“BOD”) considered a referral from a Vice Chair of the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal (“WCAT”) to the Chair of the WCAT under section 251(2) of the Workers Compensation Act (“Act”). The Vice Chair considered that Item AP1-37-3, Classification — Changes, of the Assessment Manual relating to the effective date of a classification change made under section 37(2)(f) of the Act was not supported by the Act.

The BOD approved amendments to the policy to make a classification change made under section 37(2)(f) of the Act effective on:

  • the date the decision to change the firm’s classification occurs, if the change will lead to a decrease in the base rate, or
  • January 1st of the year following the date the decision to change the firm’s classification occurs, if the change will lead to an increase in the base

You may examine the resolution (PDF 62kb) of the BOD. These amendments are effective October 11, 2012, and apply to all decisions, including appellate decisions, made on or after October 11, 2012.

For further information on this issue, please contact Susan Hynes at 604 276-5160.

Net Rate Transitioning Policy

On October 11, 2012, the Board of Directors approved changes to assessment policy to introduce a net rate transitioning program. This new policy was introduced to reduce the financial hardship that some firms face when they are reclassified and must pay a substantially higher net assessment rate as a result.

Under this policy, qualifying firms facing sudden and substantial net rate increases because of reclassification will not pay their new net assessment rate — or “target rate” — right away. Instead, qualifying firms will transition to their new, higher net rates over a period of up to three years. To fund the shortfall caused by these lower transitional rates, firms across the rate groups receiving transitioning firms will pay a nominal additional premium.

The net rate transitioning policy is effective as of October 11, 2012 and will apply to rate determinations for the 2013 and later rate years.

For further information on this issue, please contact Anthony Moffatt at
604 276-5160.

You may examine the complete resolution and amendments (PDF 108kb).