Issue Overview: This past session a proposal to increase workers' compensation benefits was debated. Proponents of the bill believe that Indiana's benefit levels are substandard even though the Legislature in 2006 increased workers' compensation levels thru 2010.
In comparison to other states in the country, Indiana's benefit levels are in the middle of the pack. Opponents of increasing benefits argue that a rise in benefits would result in a sharp increase in employers' premiums, thus creating a less business-friendly environment.
NFIB Position: In response to a 2007 Member Ballot question on this issue, 84 percent of NFIB members responded they do not favor an increase in workers' compensation benefits.
Issue Status: HB 1488, which proposed increases in workers' compensation benefits, passed the Indiana House by a vote of 83-12 on Feb. 27, 2007. However, the legislation stalled in the Indiana Senate. A subsequent attempt to amend these benefit increases into another piece of workers' compensation legislation, SB 537, passed the House 51-48; however, the changes were not accepted by the Senate.