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June 29, 2004

Report: State should offset comp awards to reflect social security and pensions

Some New Yorkers continue to collect workers' comp benefits even after they retire and receiving a pension and social security benefits, costing employers millions each year, according to a latest in the series of reports on workers' compensation reform from The Business Council.

Many employers have noted that some workers nearing retirement file workers' comp claims and collect the benefits after retirement as a supplement to pension and other benefits, according to "Social Security and Pension Offsets: A Money-saving, Fraud-busing Reform."

"No employer wants to think its employees could be defrauding the system with bogus claims, but reporting patterns and rising claim costs depict the sad truth," the report said.

The report urged lawmakers to support proposed legislation that would credit 50 percent of a recipient's old-age Social Security benefits and the recipient's employer-funded pension plan toward comp payments.

Nineteen other states have already passed laws that offset comp awards based on Social Security benefits, the report noted.

The complete Comp Watch '04 series is available here.