Chickashanews.com

July 15, 2013

Seminar to provide info on new Okla. workers' compensation system

Tiffany Martinez
The Express-Star

— Chickasha businesses will have the chance to educate themselves on the details of SB 1062, a recent legislation that will greatly affect the workers’ compensation system in Oklahoma. The event will take place at 11:45 a.m. on July 31 at the USAO ballroom.

Senior Vice President of Communication and Marketing for the State Chamber of Oklahoma Jennifer Monies said the main goal of the seminar is to help businesses understand the new law and encourage them to take advantage of the changes.

“This will, hopefully, reduce their costs and allow them to continue to protect their workers from injury,” Monies said.

This piece of legislation will go into effect on Feb. 1, 2014.  It essentially changes the workers’ compensation system from judicial to administrative.

“For decades, our broken workers’ compensation system has been a hindrance to business and a complication for injured workers trying to get quality care in order to return to work,” Monies said. “Those days are now over. Oklahoma will now have a more cost-efficient and easier way to navigate administrative workers’ comp system that will be better for the employer and employee alike. This change in law will exponentially improve our state’s ability to compete for jobs and investment.”

The State Chamber of Oklahoma represents more than 1,000 Oklahoma businesses and 350,000 employees and takes pride in helping usher in one of the most pro-business legislation sessions in Oklahoma history this year.

“We were in close communication with our members throughout the legislative session to ensure their top issues were addressed in the legislation,” Monies said. “It is now important to follow up with our members and make sure they understand all of the nuances of the new law, which is why we are holding seven seminars across the state.”

The first seminar will take place today in Miami, Okla. The others will be held in the remaining six quadrants of the state. All seminars, however, will follow the same format.

“President Fred Morgan will begin each seminar and then turn it over to two of our lobbyists — both of whom were integral parts of writing the law,” Monies said.

The event is open to all businesses, according to Monies, and a business does not need to be a member of the State Chamber of Oklahoma to attend.

Registration, at a cost of $20 per business to cover lunch costs, is required. Patrons may register online at www.okstatechamber.com/events.