Denver, CO – One hundred years ago, Colorado became one of the first states in the country to create a State Compensation Insurance Fund to protect Colorado workers and employers. On March 12, Governor Hickenlooper recognized 100 years of protecting Colorado workers and employers with a proclamation and cake-cutting ceremony at the State Capitol honoring Pinnacol Assurance, the successor to that original fund.
The ceremony also honored individuals and companies who symbolize this rich history of serving Colorado workers and businesses: an injured worker, a 100-year policyholder, an agent partner and Pinnacol employees.
In 1915, the Colorado General Assembly passed the Workers’ Compensation Act to establish the State Compensation Insurance Fund, ensuring that the state’s workers would receive benefits covering lost wages and medical costs when injured on the job, regardless of the cause of injury, while also offering stable protection to all Colorado employers at the lowest possible cost. In 1987, the Fund became the State Compensation Insurance Authority. In 1999, the Authority became Pinnacol Assurance.
Over these last 100 years, Colorado has developed a workers’ compensation system that effectively balances the needs of injured workers and of businesses. A 2014 study from the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services showed that Colorado has the 11th lowest workers’ compensation rates in the country. Yet, at the same time, Colorado has improved benefits for injured workers.
“Colorado’s workers’ compensation system is considered to be one of the best in the country because it effectively balances the needs of injured workers and of businesses,” said Phil Kalin, President and CEO of Pinnacol. “That balance between stable rates and fair treatment of injured workers makes Colorado an attractive state for both employers and their employees to locate, live and work.”
Today, Pinnacol insures more than 56,000 employers, covers nearly 1 million workers, provides compassionate care for nearly 40,000 injured workers annually and protects the industries that drive Colorado’s economy. According to a recent study, Colorado boasts the 11th lowest workers’ compensation rates in the country. Unlike other states, Colorado has not instituted any statutory or regulatory rollbacks that have reduced care or benefits for injured workers