This bill has been recently amended. In essence, the amendments seek to hold the insurance industry’s feet to the fire with regard to excess profits not being passed on to policyholders.

A synopsis of this bill’s latest amendment follows:

Amends the Illinois Workers’ Compensation and Employer’s Liability Rates Article of the Illinois Insurance Code. Provides that a rate is excessive if it is likely to produce a long run profit that is unreasonably high for the insurance provided or if expenses are unreasonably high in relation to the services rendered (instead of providing that a rate in a competitive market is not excessive and a rate in a noncompetitive market is excessive if it is likely to produce a long run profit that is unreasonably high for the insurance provided or if expenses are unreasonably high in relation to the services rendered). Provides for prefiling (rather than filing) of rates with the Director of Insurance and makes other changes regarding rate filings and disapproval of rate filings. Provides that, if an insurer has no legally effective rates as a result of the Director’s disapproval of rates or other act, the Director shall, on request of the insurer, specify interim rates for the insurer that are high enough to protect the interests of all parties and may order that a specified portion of the premiums be placed in an escrow account approved by the Director, and, when new rates become legally effective, the Director shall order the escrowed funds or any overcharge in the interim rates to be distributed appropriately, except that refunds to policyholders that are de minimus shall not be required. Provides for a review of workers’ compensation premium rates by the Director of Insurance and for a refund of excessive premium. Repeals provisions regarding presumptions that a competitive market exists, determining whether a competitive market exists, and disapproval of rates under specified circumstances. Amends the Workers’ Compensation Act. Provides for safety programs and return to work programs. Requires a recalculation of premium rates in connection with those programs. Authorizes waiver of certain fees with respect to self-insured employers who implement the programs.

On June 3, 2015, this bill was referred to the Labor and Commerce Committee for consideration. Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner refers to it as a “phony” bill. Governor Rauner seems to oppose anything that may affect big business.

Bruce Rauner, Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act