Minnesota cracks down on workers’ comp cheats — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Minnesota cracks down on workers’ comp cheats

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Technological breakthroughs have enabled Minnesota’s Department of Labor and Industry to identify and fine more employers that fail to carry the proper workers’ compensation coverage.

Preliminary figures show that the department fined 516 Minnesota employers for having insufficient coverage in fiscal year 2009, up from 210 in FY ’07. Penalties collected from employers also grew to more than $1 million in 2009, compared to $711,941 in 2007.

The fines go into the state’s special compensation fund that pays claims for uncovered workers. The special fund is financed by a surcharge on all workers’ compensation premiums. Consequently, the more fines the state collects from employers attempting to avoid paying premiums, the lower the surcharge on compliant employers.

The Department of Labor and Industry credits the increased enforcement activity to a “search-friendly database” that helps state employees uncover noncompliant employers. The department performs an annual look-up of employers every April.

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