Workers’ Compensation Emerging Issues: Will 2016 Be the Year Opt Out Legislation Catches Fire?

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By Thomas A. Robinson, Co-Editor-in-Chief, Workers’ Compensation Emerging Issues Analysis

We are pleased to present the 2015 Workers’ Compensation Emerging Issues Analysis (“WCEIA”). With this third, annual edition, we offer a diverse collection of expert analysis, incisive commentary, interesting case summaries and legislative updates from all across our nation. Geared not just for practicing attorneys, this volume offers risk managers, insurance brokers and executives, claims adjusters, HR experts and academic researchers relevant insights, practice points, and other pertinent takeaways that will enhance your work.

2016: Is This The Year Opt Out Legislation Catches Fire?

As depicted on this edition’s cover and as Lex Larson and I point out in the volume’s opening article, 2016 seems poised as the year of the opt out debate. The successful Oklahoma legislation is now two years old. Proponents and opponents alike are pointing to alleged successes and failures. Constitutional challenges to the law will likely move to the Oklahoma Supreme Court by mid-year. The debate has spilled over to other states.

For example, when both Tennessee and South Carolina closed their 2015 legislative sessions, each had pending one or more opt out bills that state legislators indicate will be resubmitted early in 2016 for debate and consideration. While most of the current opt out action is limited to the Southeast, workers’ compensation experts from all…

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