WorkSafeBC Home

Discussion Paper - Criteria for Commutation

The Policy & Regulation Development Bureau developed a discussion paper on "Criteria for Commutation".

As a result of legislative changes to the Workers Compensation Act ("Act") relating to permanent partial disability awards and retirement benefits, the Board conducted a review of its commutation policies. At time of consultation, if the permanent disability periodic payment was not more than $100 per month and the capitalized value does not exceed $40,000, the Board would award a lump sum in lieu of monthly payments. For monthly permanent disability periodic payments valued at not more than $125 per month and with a capitalized value of not more than $60,000, the worker was usually offered the choice of a monthly permanent disability periodic payment or a lump sum. Generally, where the monthly periodic payment was more than $125 per month or the capitalized value exceeded $60,000, no commutation was granted. There were, however, certain situations provided for in policy where a commutation might be considered. Of consideration was whether it was in the worker's long-term interests to receive a commutation. Criteria included whether the commutation would enhance the income position of the worker and, whether the worker had a stable source of income other than the disability award.

Current Board policy on commutation made a distinction between a permanent disability award granted under section 23(1) of the Act and those provided under section 23(3) of the Act. In the latter case, there was no eligibility for a commutation award where the monthly periodic payment was more than $125 per month or the capitalized value exceeded $60,000.

Both the Core Reviewer of workers' compensation legislation and policies and the Administration expressed concern about the existing criteria for commuting permanent disability awards.

Consultation closed July 26, 2002.

Consultation Deadline: Jul 26, 2002 File type: PDF (65 KB) Asset type: Discussion Paper