Expert Witness on Workers Compensation Insurance
NCCI State Map

Buried within the fine print of your Workers Compensation insurance policy is a provision that states that the insurer will calculate premium charges based on their manuals filed with regulators. In actual practice, insurance companies don't file their own manuals for Workers Compenstion insurance (although in theory they could.)

Instead, insurers use manuals created by various rating bureaus. The above map shows which states use the NCCI as a rating bureau and which states have their own non-NCCI rating bureaus.

Although rating bureaus are technically independent of insurance companies, there is a close connection and working relationship between rating bureaus and the insurance companies who are the members of those rating bureaus.

Rating bureaus generally develop the manuals that spell out how Workers Compensation insurance premiums are to be calculated, and also create the manual rules that govern how experience modification factors are calculated. Rating bureaus also typically operate the assigned risk plans for states (although WCIRB in California does not perform this particular rating bureau function.)

The National Council on Compensation Insurance

The Workers' Compensation rating bureau used in most (but not all states) in the United States. NCCI writes the manuals of rules that pertain to Workers' Comp premium computation, classification codes, and administers many of the Assigned Risk Plans used in various states.
Their Scopes manual contains the details of what's intended to be covered by the various Workers' Comp classification codes You can order NCCI manuals from their website, including online access, but these are only available by subscription (that is, you have to pay to get access to the manuals that provide the details about how your Workers Compensation insurance premiums will be calculated.)

Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California

This is the California rating bureau, which develops manuals and calculates experience modification factors for employers in California. Unlike NCCI, WCIRB does not charge for access to their manuals. There are great similarities in the WCIRB manual rules as compared to NCCI manuals, but also important differences in some details. And the formula for calculating experience modification factors (often called X-Mods in California) differs significantly from the formula used by NCCI.

New York Compensation Insurance Rating Board

This is the Workers Compensation insurance rating bureau for New York state. Unlike WCIRB, NYCIRB coordinates with NCCI for employers operating both within New York and in other states, although NYCIRB rules apply within New York.

New Jersey Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau

This is the rating bureau for New Jersey. Like other rating bureaus, it creates the manuals of rules that govern Workers Compensation insurance premiums, including the classification definitions. NJCRIB also oversees the New Jersey Assigned Risk Plan and calculates experience mods for New Jersey employers.

Workers Compensation
Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusets

The rating bureau for Massachusets. Responsible for manuals that govern premiums and classification definitions within MA and calculates experience modification factors for employers within the state. Coordinates rating data with NCCI for experience modifiers of employers that operate within both MA and states that use NCCI.

Delaware Compensation Rating Bureau and Pennsylvania Rating Bureau

These two states operate their own independent rating bureaus that share their own unique classification system that is significantly different than the one used in other states.
These rating bureaus do not coordinate rating data with NCCI, which means that separate experience modifiers are developed for employers within these states, even if those employers also operate in NCCI jurisdictions.

North Carolina Rating Bureau

Another independent, non-NCCI rating bureau.  North Carolina promulgates its own in-state experience mods, but also reports data to NCCI for use in interstate mods. NCRB performs inspections to determine correct classifications for NC employers and administers the assigned risk plan for NC but uses NCCI manuals.

Compensation Advisory Oganization of Michigan

Michigan is also not an NCCI state, but maintains its own separate independent rating organization -- the Compensation Advisory Organization of Michigan, or CAOM -- with an important caveat: in Michigan, there is no real regulation of classification codes for voluntary (non-assigned risk) Workers Comp. CAOM only has classification jurisdiction over policies written through the assigned risk plan that CAOM administers in Michigan.

CAOM administers the Michigan Workers Compensation Placement Authority, which is that state's Assigned Risk plan. Michigan also calculates its own separate experience modifier for Michigan exposure, and this mod is not combinable with other states in an interstate mod. So an employer operating in both Michigan and in NCCI states will have two separate experience modifiers--one just for Michigan, and another for NCCI states.

Wisconsin Compensation Rating Bureau

Wisconsin also maintains its own non-NCCI rating bureau for determining classifications, premium computation, and experience rating. In state experience modifiers are calculated by this independent bureau, but data is also provided to NCCI for interstate mods. 

Indiana Compensation Rating Bureau

Many people in the insurance business believe that Indiana is an NCCI state. This is not true. 
Indiana maintains its own independent rating bureau, the Indiana Compensation Rating Bureau. This bureau uses NCCI for ratemaking, and uses the NCCI Basic Manual, but does not always follow NCCI classification interpretations. For some classification codes, the Indiana rules can be significantly different than NCCI guidelines.  For classification decisions in Indiana, it's best to talk directly to the ICRB.

Minnesota Workers Compensation
Insurers Association

Minnesota operates its own rating bureau, the Minnesota Workers Compensation Insurance Association and like Michigan, does not regulate what classification codes insurers use on voluntary market WC business. Unlike Michigan, however, loss and payroll data is reported to NCCI for inclusion in interstate mods. 

State by State Information
For more information, take a look at our state by state list of insurance regulators and regulations.


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Expert Witness on Workers Compensation Insurance