ITF(Industry Task Force) Association
Effecting positive change in Workers’ Compensation through the views of Alberta employers
Some Recent Successes
The ITF Association was an active participant in the 2017 WCB Review. As a result of ITF efforts, government did not adopt the review panel recommendation to discontinue the WCB surplus distribution to employers. ITF was also instrumental in influencing several other changes including the selection of members for the WCB Board of Directors, ongoing WCB engagement with and accountability to stakeholders, improved services for employers, and improvements to the practice for deeming earnings.
WCB Surplus Distribution
Contrary to policy and past practice, the WCB Board of Directors did not approve distribution of the 2016 WCB surplus to employers in early 2017.
ITF was very vocal in expressing the view that this represented "employer money" and should be returned to employers as per policy. The Board of Directors approved the surplus distribution in November 2017.
Employer Appeals Consulting Service (EAC)
ITF made it a priority for several years to secure WCB appeal advisory services for Alberta employers. As a direct result of our continued advocacy and discussions with WCB, the Employer Appeals Consulting Service (EAC) was introduced to help employers seeking advice or assistance in initiating an appeal of a WCB claim decision. ITF continued advocating for improved services during the 2017 review and employers and workers will now be provided with equal access to services through the Office of Appeal Advisors as well as a new Fair Practices Office.
States of Emergency
Following concerns raised by ITF members regarding the impact on modified work and claim costs arising from the evacuation of Fort McMurray during the Wood Buffalo fire, the WCB initiated a policy consultation and proposed amendments to two policies.
The ITF was successful in advocating for the policy to include both provincially as well as locally declared states of emergency and for the application of cost relief.
Rate Setting Methodology
In 2016 the WCB requested ITF feedback on three proposed changes to rate setting methodology for 2017. After consideration members supported alignment of the MPCC with Maximum Insurable Earnings as well as a change to classification of two types of claim costs.
ITF did not support the proposed change to the experience rating window for fatalities (the WCB proposed a 10 year window rather than the existing 5 year window). After discussion with ITF members, the WCB did not move forward with implementing the increase in the experience rating window.
Experience Rating Claim Cost Threshold
ITF initiated discussion and worked collaboratively with the WCB to introduce a new model for establishing the employer experience rating claim cost threshold that increased the 2016 threshold amount to $1300.00 and achieves a better balance between employer ability to effectively manage WCB claim costs and WCB experience rating principles.
The threshold was increased to $1400.00 for 2017 as a result of the formula for ongoing review also agreed to under the new model.