HB 579 - Workers' comp; Self-insurers Guar- anty Trust Fund; amend provisions

Georgia House of Representatives - 1995/1996 Sessions

HB 579 - Workers' comp; Self-insurers Guar- anty Trust Fund; amend provisions

Page Numbers - 1/ 2/ 3/ 4/ 5
Code Sections - 34-9-386
Prev Bill Next Bill Bill Summary Bill List Disclaimer
1. Lane  146th            2. Dobbs  92nd             3. Barnes  33rd

House Comm: IndR / Senate Comm: I&L / House Vote: Yeas 161 Nays 0 Senate Vote: Yeas 43 Nays 0 ---------------------------------------- House Action Senate ---------------------------------------- 2/3/95 Read 1st Time 3/7/95 2/6/95 Read 2nd Time 3/10/95 2/17/95 Favorably Reported 3/9/95 Am Committee Amend/Sub 3/6/95 Read 3rd Time 3/15/95 3/6/95 Passed/Adopted 3/15/95 CA Comm/Floor Amend/Sub 4/3/95 Sent to Governor 4/18/95 Signed by Governor 335 Act/Veto Number 7/1/95 Effective Date ---------------------------------------- Code Sections amended: 34-9-381, 34-9-383, 34-9-386, 34-9-388
HB 579 HB 579/CA H. B. No. 579 (AM) By: Representatives Lane of the 146th, Dobbs of the 92nd and Barnes of the 33rd A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT 1- 1 To amend Article 10 of Chapter 9 of Title 34 of The Official 1- 2 Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to the Self-insurers 1- 3 Guaranty Trust Fund, so as to define the term self-insurer 1- 4 to include a county or municipal hospital authority; to 1- 5 delete references to the term of office of the chairman of 1- 6 the board of trustees; to revise provisions relative to the 1- 7 assessment of participants; to increase the funding level at 1- 8 which assessments shall not be required; to provide for 1- 9 special assessments; to authorize the board of trustees to 1-10 proceed against security pledged by a participant if payment 1-11 of an assessment is not made; to provide that a participant 1-12 may have its authorization to self-insure revoked for 1-13 failure to pay penalties or fines; to provide for matters 1-14 relative to the foregoing; to repeal conflicting laws; and 1-15 for other purposes. 1-16 BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF GEORGIA: SECTION 1. 1-17 Article 10 of Chapter 9 of Title 34 of The Official Code of 1-18 Georgia Annotated, relating to the Self-insurers Guaranty 1-19 Trust Fund, is amended by striking paragraph (7) of Code 1-20 Section 34-9-381, relating to definitions and inserting in 1-21 lieu thereof a new paragraph (7) to read as follows: 1-22 "(7) 'Self-insurer' means a private employer, including 1-23 any hospital authority created pursuant to the 1-24 provisions of Article 4 of Chapter 7 of Title 31, the 1-25 'Hospital Authorities Law,' that has been authorized to 1-26 self-insure its payment of workers' compensation 1-27 benefits pursuant to this chapter, except any 1-28 governmental self-insurer or other employer who elects 1-29 to group self-insure pursuant to Code Section 34-9-152, 1-30 or captive insurers as provided for in Chapter 41 of 1-31 Title 33, or employers who, pursuant to any reciprocal 1-32 agreements or contracts of indemnity executed prior to 1-33 March 8, 1960, created funds for the purpose of H. B. No. 579 -1- (Index) HB 579/CA 2- 1 satisfying the obligations of self-insured employers 2- 2 under this chapter." SECTION 2. 2- 3 Said article is further amended by striking subsection (a) 2- 4 of Code Section 34-9-383, relating to the membership of the 2- 5 board of trustees of the fund, and inserting in lieu thereof 2- 6 a new subsection (a) to read as follows: 2- 7 "(a) Each member of the board of trustees shall be an 2- 8 employee of a participant. The board of trustees shall 2- 9 consist of a chairman chairperson and six trustees elected 2-10 by the participants. The board of trustees shall 2-11 initially be appointed by the Governor not later than 2-12 August 1, 1990. Three of the initial trustees shall be 2-13 appointed for terms of office which shall end on January 2-14 1, 1993, and the chairman chairperson and the three other 2-15 initial trustees shall be appointed for terms of office 2-16 which shall end on January 1, 1995. Thereafter, each 2-17 trustee and chairman shall be elected to a four-year term 2-18 and shall continue to serve unless otherwise ineligible 2-19 under subsection (b) of this Code section. No later than 2-20 90 days prior to the end of any member's term of office, 2-21 the chairman chairperson shall select a nominating 2-22 committee from among the participants to select candidates 2-23 for election by the participants for the following term. 2-24 In the event the chairman chairperson fails to complete 2-25 his or her term of office, a successor will be elected by 2-26 the board of trustees to fill the unexpired term of 2-27 office." SECTION 3. 2-28 Said article in further amended by striking Code Section 2-29 34-9-386, relating to the assessment of fund participants 2-30 and the liability of the fund and participants for claims, 2-31 and inserting in lieu thereof a new Code Section 34-9-386 to 2-32 read as follows: 2-33 "34-9-386. (Index) 2-34 (a)(1) The board of trustees shall, commencing January 2-35 1, 1991, assess each participant in accordance with 2-36 paragraph (2) of this subsection. Upon reaching a 2-37 funded level of $3 million, $10 million, all annual 2-38 assessments against participants who have paid at least 2-39 three prior assessments shall cease except as H. B. No. 579 -2- (Index) HB 579/CA 3- 1 specifically provided in paragraph (4) of this 3- 2 subsection. 3- 3 (2) Assessment for each new participant in the first 3- 4 calendar year of participation shall be $4,000.00. 3- 5 Thereafter, assessments shall be in accordance with 3- 6 paragraphs (3) and (4) of this subsection. 3- 7 (3) After the first calendar year of participation, the 3- 8 assessment of each participant shall be made on the 3- 9 basis of a percentage of the total of indemnity benefits 3-10 paid by, or on behalf of, each participant during the 3-11 previous calendar year. Except as provided in paragraph 3-12 (2) of this subsection for the first calendar year of 3-13 participation and paragraph (4) of this subsection, in 3-14 no event shall a participant will not be assessed at any 3-15 one time an amount in excess of 1.5 percent of the 3-16 indemnity benefits paid by that participant during the 3-17 previous calendar year or $1,000.00, whichever is 3-18 greater. The total amount of assessments, not including 3-19 those set out in paragraph (4) of this subsection, in 3-20 any calendar year against any one participant shall not 3-21 exceed the amount of $4,000.00. 3-22 (4) If after the full funded level of $3 million $10 3-23 million has been attained, the fund is reduced to an 3-24 amount below $2 million $7 million as the result of the 3-25 payment of claims, the administration of claims, or the 3-26 costs of administration of the fund the board of 3-27 trustees shall assess levy a special assessment in 3-28 proportion to the assessment provided for in paragraph 3-29 (3) of this subsection of the participants in an amount 3-30 sufficient to increase the funded level to $3 million $7 3-31 million; provided, however, that such special assessment 3-32 in any calendar year against any one participant shall 3-33 not exceed the amount of $10,000.00. 3-34 (5) Funds obtained by such assessments shall be used 3-35 only for the purposes set forth in this article and 3-36 shall be deposited upon receipt by the board of trustees 3-37 into the fund. If payment of any assessment made under 3-38 this subsection article is not made within 30 days of 3-39 the sending of the notice to the participant, the board 3-40 of trustees shall is authorized to proceed in court for 3-41 judgment against the participant, including the amount 3-42 of the assessment, the costs of suit, interest, and 3-43 reasonable attorneys' fees or proceed directly against 3-44 the security pledged by the participant. H. B. No. 579 -3- (Index) HB 579/CA 4- 1 (b)(1) The fund shall be liable for claims arising out 4- 2 of injuries occurring after January 1, 1991; provided, 4- 3 however, no claim may be asserted against the fund until 4- 4 the funding level has reached $1.5 million. 4- 5 (2) All participants shall be required to maintain 4- 6 surety bonds or the board of trustees may, in its 4- 7 discretion, accept any irrevocable letter of credit or 4- 8 other acceptable forms of security in the amount of no 4- 9 less than $100,000.00 until the board, after 4-10 consultation with the board of trustees, has determined 4-11 that the financial capability of the trust fund and the 4-12 participant no longer warrants any form of security. 4-13 (c) A participant who ceases to be a self-insurer shall be 4-14 liable for any and all assessments made pursuant to this 4-15 Code section as long as indemnity compensation is paid for 4-16 claims which originated when the participant was a 4-17 self-insurer. Assessments of such a participant shall be 4-18 based on the indemnity benefits paid by the participant 4-19 during the previous calendar year. 4-20 (d) Upon refusal to pay assessments, penalties, or fines 4-21 to the fund when due, the fund may treat the self-insurer 4-22 as being in noncompliance with this chapter and the 4-23 self-insurer shall be subject to revocation of its board 4-24 authorization to self-insure." SECTION 4. 4-25 Said article is further amended by striking subsection (b) 4-26 of Code Section 34-9-388, relating to reports of 4-27 participant's insolvency and participant's certified 4-28 financial information, and inserting in lieu thereof a new 4-29 subsection (b) to read as follows: 4-30 "(b) The board shall, at the inception of a participant's 4-31 self-insured status and at least annually thereafter, so 4-32 long as the participant remains self-insured, furnish the 4-33 board of trustees with a copy of each participant's 4-34 certified financial information, audit performed in 4-35 accordance with generally accepted auditing standards by 4-36 an independent certified public accounting firm, three to 4-37 five years of loss history, name of the person or company 4-38 to administer claims and any other pertinent information 4-39 submitted to the board to authenticate the participant's 4-40 self-insured status. The board of trustees may contract 4-41 for the services of a qualified certified public 4-42 accountant or firm to review, analyze, and make H. B. No. 579 -4- (Index) HB 579/CA 5- 1 recommendations on these documents. All financial 5- 2 information submitted by a participant shall be considered 5- 3 confidential and not public information." SECTION 5. 5- 4 All laws and parts of laws in conflict with this Act are 5- 5 repealed. H. B. No. 579 -5- (Index)

Office of the Clerk of the House
Robert E. Rivers, Jr., Clerk of the House
Last Updated on 01/02/97