Historical MA Worker’s Compensation Rates for Arborists

“These worker’s comp rates are killing me”

We hear it all the time. And yes, the worker’s comp rates for any business is a burdensome cost, but let’s look at where these rates have gone in the past 10 years. In 2002, the worker’s comp rate for an arborist (Class code 0106) in Massachusetts was $17.06/$100 of payroll. Today, the worker’s comp rate for that class code is $14.64/$100 of payroll. That’s a 14% REDUCTION.

Did you know that the average price for a loaf of bread in 2002 was $0.98 compared to $1.75 today and that the average price for a gallon of gasoline in 2002 was $1.57 compared to $3.73 today?

The worker’s comp rate is based on the amount of premium collected versus claims paid plus administrative costs. So, the fact that the rate has actually gone down is an indication that the industry as a whole has done a great job in limiting the frequency and severity of worker’s comp claims. This is a credit to the industries attention and focus on safety programs, loss control and better equipment.

Now we all know that nothing good lasts forever, so we would not anticipate these rates to go down any further, however if the industry can maintain the safety culture that has gained traction over the last few years then perhaps we can enjoy a couple more years of favorable rates….
So whenever you hear the expression, “I long for the good old days”, just remember that the Arborist rate in 1993 was $20.49!!

McSweeney & Ricci is one of the largest providers of insurance to the Green Industry in Massachusetts, insuring over 140 landscape and arborist businesses. For more information on insuring your business, contact a McSweeney & Ricci Account Manager today!

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