HCS/SCS/SB 901 - The Committee on Legislative Research shall form a committee to present quarterly reports on the Second Injury Fund.
Beginning August 28, 2008, no claim for permanent partial disability shall be made against the Second Injury Fund.
All rights to compensation for permanent total disability shall cease upon the death of the injured employee. Only accrued benefits for permanent total disability will be paid to dependents upon their death.
Permanent total disability payments shall cease when the employee is able to compete for employment in the open labor market or returns to work. The Labor and Industrial Relations Commission shall retain jurisdiction in the case during the lifetime of an employee who has received an award for permanent total disability.
The Second Injury Fund is renamed the Veterans and Permanent Total Disability Fund.
Currently, the Treasurer with advice and consent of the Attorney General may enter into settlement agreements for claims against the Second Injury Fund. This act replaces the role of the Treasurer with the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations or its director's designee. Compromise settlements shall not be greater than $20,000. Staff attorneys of the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations shall defend the fund. In defending the fund the Treasurer may dispute the reasonableness of the medical fees based upon an audit of the medical bills. Actuarial studies of the fund shall be conducted yearly instead of every 3 years.
After August 28, 2008, claims against the fund shall only be compensable when the employee has a medically documented preexisting disability as a direct result of military duty or as a result of a preexisting permanent partial disability from a compensable injury that equals a minimum of 50 weeks of compensation, or if a major extremity injury only, equals a minimum of 15% permanent partial disability and then sustains a subsequent work-related injury that, in combination results in permanent total disability. The employer is liable only for the disability resulting from the subsequent work-related injury in and of itself unless the compensation for which the employer is liable at the time of the subsequent injury is less than the compensation for permanent total disability. In such a case the employee shall be paid the initial liability plus the remainder that would be due for permanent total disability out of the Second Injury Fund.
Persons receiving payments from the fund shall annually submit proof of eligibility to continue to receive payments supported by the treating physician. The fund shall continue to cover injuries of employees employed by uninsured employers. Lump sum settlements paid out of the fund shall not be awarded in an amount greater than $10,000 in a 12 month period until the fund becomes solvent.
Claimants shall not receive compensation for injuries in which the aggregate total of disability exceeds 100%.
Attorney's fees shall not exceed 15% of any award or settlement paid out of the fund.
Employer's may provide an irrevocable letter of credit from a bank as security to self-insure.
The Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration may audit companies insured in multiple states to determine the amount of insurance premium applicable to Missouri workers and the surcharge required for the Second Injury Fund.
The Workers' Compensation Fund tax shall not be less than 1% and no more than 2% in any year after January 1, 2009.
Advances from the Workers' Compensation Fund to the Second Injury Fund shall be made with the advice of the chairs of the Senate and House appropriations committees. Advances shall be repaid within 5 years.
This act is similar to SB 606 (2007).