WASHINGTON – Benefits paid for workers’ compensation increased in Rhode Island and much of the nation, but fell in Massachusetts in 2011, according to a report by the National Academy of Social Insurance.
Increases in most states came after widespread declines in workers’ compensation in the aftermath of the recession, according to the report, called “Workers’ Compensation: Benefits, Coverage and Costs, 2011.”
Rhode Island paid $168.3 million in workers’ compensation benefits in 2011, up from $160 million in 2010, an increase of 5.2 percent. It was the 15th largest increase in the country.
When measured relative to total covered wages, benefits paid in Rhode Island rose 2 cents from 84 cents per $100 covered to 86 cents, the 11th largest increase nationwide. Employers’ costs per $100 covered rose 6 cents in the Ocean State, from $1.01 or $1.07.
Massachusetts benefits fell 5 percent from more than $1 billion in 2010 to $962.6 million in 2011, ranking the state 44th for change in benefits.
Relative to covered wages, the Bay State dropped 5 cents from 57 cents to 52 cents per $100 covered, for a rank of 34th in terms of the change. Employers’ costs remained the same, at 73 cents per $100 of covered wages.
Total benefits nationwide rose 3.5 percent to $60.2 billion in 2011, but remained unchanged when measured relative to covered wages. Costs to employers rose 3 cents nationally, to $1.27 per $100 covered.