Emergency Assessments Imminent if Chrysler Reneges

Michigan risk managers are concerned that their self-insured programs would face an emergency assessment to make up for a security fund shortfall should Chrysler LLC fail to meet it’s obligations to the state’s workers.

Chrysler filed Chapter 11 on April 30th, and there are worries that the filing could allow Chrysler to get out of paying workers’ comp claims. Leigh Stepaniak, director of risk management for the Wayne County Airport Authority at Detroit Metropolitan Airport and member of the board of managers for the Michigan Self-Insurers’ Association said an emergency assessment would be difficult given the current economic conditions. “We are all looking at our budgets, which are extremely tight, and we are looking at our own losses, and if they do any emergency assessment it is going to impact us.” Stepaniak said.

According to the attorney general’s motion, even if emergency assessments were levied, the fund’s “maximum possible balance would be approximately $9 million – substantially less than needed to cover the debtor’s statutory obligations.”

Chrysler’s workers’ comp liability could possibly exceed $150 million and requires the company to expend more than $25 million annually. Officials in other states where Chrysler self-insures workers’ comp liabilities are reviewing the Michigan filing to see if any action may be appropriate.

If you or someone you know has been injured on the job, please contact the¬†Raleigh workers’ compensation attorneys¬†of Scudder Seguin, PLLC by calling (919) 851-3311.