The workers compensation system has been rife with problems almost since its inception. Employers whopay into it, employees who rely on it, analysts who look at it, and scholars who study it all have a long list of complaints about how it does not work. It is a heavily bureaucratic, adversarial system that shortchanges injured workers, even while employers struggle now andthen with rapidly rising workers compensation insurance rates. And to the extent that rate reductions have taken place, they inevitably have come at the expense of the injured, where lawmakers have slashedbenefits andpushedmany of the injuredentirely out of the system.
One of the ugliest aspects of our employment system is how much workers give up in pay because of bad insurance. By bad insurance, I'm talking waste and overhead in unemployment insurance and worker comp insurance systems. Those are the main two, but there are others as well.
It's ugly. Conflict of interest makes it hard to change. Nevertheless, there are solutions on the horizon. Just like we now have peer to peer messaging that can escape censorship and surveillance, innovators are coming up with peer to peer approaches to insurance: