SBR: KASB Workers Comp Fund shines

With the third rate reduction in three consecutive years, the KASB Workers Compensation Fund continues to be a strong, stable choice for KASB members.

“We remain competitively priced and pride ourselves on sustainability and service,” said Rod Spangler, KASB assistant executive director risk management.

The Workers Compensation Board of Trustees recently approved a general rate reduction, the largest of the three over the last three years. Spangler said that means the Fund is fiscally strong and continuing to meet the needs of its members.

“We see many carriers come in and out of the market,” Spangler said, “but the KASB Workers Compensation Fund is solid and has remained so for 30 years.”

The Fund was created in 1987 by the association to provide KASB members with affordable, reliable insurance. The fund operates solely for the benefit of KASB members and is designed to return favorable operating results to members through
dividends or a reduction in future premium costs. No eligible member has ever been
denied coverage, nor has any member been non-renewed due to excessive losses.

There are many variables that impact the cost of work comp insurance, Spangler said. One trend he sees is an insurance provider that may provide the board a low bid to get the business, then increase the cost after a year or two.

“That’s not how we do business,” Spangler said.

The KASB Work Comp Fund is governed by a separate Board of Trustees composed of locally-elected board of education members. All claims and investigations are done in-house and issues can be addressed directly. All service renewals and decisions are handled locally.

“Price is very important,” Spangler said, “but so is the trust both you as an employer and your staff must have in knowing your carrier is going to be there for both of you.”

When making a decision on work comp insurance, or any insurance for that matter, Spangler suggests boards consider whether the company will deliver the kind of support needed to fully support employees when a claim occurs.

KASB Risk Management Operations Manager Liz Maisberger-Clark has served as the fund administrator for over 15 years. She said the highest point of need for an employee is at the point of injury and before they return to work.

“Both the injured worker and the district require great communication and support during that time, and that’s where your work comp carrier really needs to shine,” she said. “You need someone who will support your injured worker through the entire claim and at the same time help reduce the negative impact to you as the employer.”

Spangler urges KASB members to be cautious when shopping for this kind of service.

“The market is soft right now in Kansas, which means rates are going down,” he said. “That may make it tempting to look for an insurance carrier who promises to save you money, but there is more to this kind of insurance than just price.”
KASB has increased its service and support for all risk management solutions, including workers comp insurance.

“We’ve hired an additional claims adjuster, moved to a web-based claims process and brought online a learning management system for members of the work comp pool to train employees on preventing on-the-job injuries and reduce the number of work comp claims,” he said.

“This makes KASB’s work comp insurance – in almost every case – the best choice,” Spangler said. “We’ve been here for 30 years. The association just celebrated its 100th year of service. That level of consistent service and support is unmatched in Kansas.”

 

By Carol Pitts, cpitts@kasb.org

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