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Election results could impact workers' compensation programs

Workers' compensation policies in Minnesota and around the country may be reevaluated in light of Donald Trump's victory in the 2016 presidential election according to industry experts. The Department of Labor has advocated for federally mandated minimum workers' compensation standards, but promises to cut red tape and reign in regulatory overreach featured prominently in Trump's campaign. The president has also promised to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, and this could also greatly impact the nation's workers' compensation programs.

Experts say that the repeal of the ACA could actually reduce workers' compensation costs for some employers. Premiums have risen sharply since the passage of President Obama's landmark health care bill as companies like Aetna and United Health Group backed out of many of the marketplaces it introduced, but an evolving regulatory environment could prompt these companies to begin offering coverage once again.

The focus of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration could also change under the Trump administration . The agency has concentrated on enforcement rather than education in recent years, but experts believe that Trump's pro-business position could see these efforts curtailed. Important workers' compensation legislation is currently pending in both red and blue states, and the true impact of a new political paradigm may be clearer after lawmakers in New York, California, Florida and Illinois have voted.

Filing a workers' compensation claim can sometimes be a frustrating and bewildering experience, and regulatory changes can make matters even more confusing. Attorneys with experience in these matters may help sick or injured workers to submit the necessary paperwork supported by medical evidence, and they could also review their claims to ensure that all available benefits are being applied for.

Source: National Public Radio, "Aetna Joins Other Major Insurers In Pulling Back From Obamacare", Alison Kodjak, Aug. 16, 2016

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