ORLANDO, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Effective July 1, 2010, Florida workers’ compensation policies will use new rates for businesses in the landscaping industry. The insurance rates have been reduced for the 8th time since the 2003 legislative reforms. This most recent decrease in rates was the result of the reduced assessment for an employee disability fund, which is maintained by insurance carriers writing workers comp policies in Florida.
"This reduction in rate will provide rate relief for Florida's business owners," said Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty. "The rate reduction follows a consistent trend of declining workers' compensation rates in Florida that began following the legislative reforms in 2003."
Businesses in the landscaping industry primarily use the following classification codes to compute the workers comp premium associated with the payroll of their employees. The new rates are listed with each classification code.
9102 Class Code (Rate: 3.34) - This classification code is assigned to employees that maintain lawns and gardens. This is your standard landscape maintenance and lawn care classification and it is used by most businesses in the landscaping industry to rate their workers’ compensation premiums. It is officially titled ‘Parks NOC’ and the 2003 rate for it was 12.06 percent. Visit BearWise Landscapers’ website for more information about class code 9102.
0042 Class Code (Rate: 6.10) - This classification is applied to employees that are involved in the installation of landscapes. These landscaping operations involve laying sod, planting trees, shrubs, and flowers, and general gardening activities. This classification cannot be used in Florida with employees classified as 9102 unless the operations are conducted by separate work crews. The rate in 2003 was 16.19 and this link provides information on using class codes 0042 and 9102 on the same policy.
0106 Class Code (Rate: 12.75) - This classification code is used for tree trimmers and specifically it is used for those employees or businesses whose operations involve leaving the ground to trim trees. When ladders, bucket trucks, and any other equipment assists employees to get their feet off the ground to prune or trim trees, then this classification is applied instead of the previous landscaping class codes. It also includes the chipping and cleanup activities associated with tree trimming. The 2003 rate was 40.71 percent.
5183 Class Code (Rate: 4.55) - This classification code is applied to employees of landscaping businesses that engage in the installation or repair of underground lawn sprinkler systems. The rate in 2003 was 12.45 percent.
0005 Class Code (Rate: 4.17) - This classification is applied to employees that operate a landscape nursery, and the 2003 rate was 12.95 percent.
8810 Class Code (Rate: 0.25) - 8810 is applied to the clerical office employees of landscaping businesses that do not engage in landscape services. The 2003 rate for this class code was 0.72 percent.
8742 Class Code (Rate: 0.44) - This classification is used for salespeople employed by landscape companies. These employees also may not engage in landscape services to be rated in this lower classification. The 2003 rate was 1.41 percent.
The workers’ compensation rates will be applied to all new and renewal policies that are issued July 1st, 2010 and later. The previous rates will be used on current policies until a renewal policy is issued. The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) is the ratemaking organization that files workers' compensation rates for all carriers in Florida.
For more information regarding workers’ compensation insurance or the other unique insurance needs of businesses in the landscaping industry, please contact BearWise Landscapers. There are many other factors that impact the final workers’ compensation premium of a business, such as claims history (experience modification factor), dividend plans, deductibles, limits of insurance, and others. If your landscaping business is interested in receiving comparative insurance quotes on your workers comp renewal or other insurance products, please call Drew Roberts, CPCU, ARM at 866-296-2327 or complete the short online quote request form at www.BearWiseLandscapers.com.
About Black Bear Insurance Agency, Inc.
Black Bear Insurance Agency is located north of Orlando in Longwood, Florida. As an independent agency, the insurance agents at Black Bear have access to multiple insurance carriers. The agency specializes in handling commercial insurance programs for Florida businesses and develops specialized programs for specific groups of business, such as the landscaping industry. For more information, visit www.BlackBearAgency.com.
About BearWise Landscapers
BearWise Landscapers is a division of Black Bear Insurance Agency. The insurance agents at BearWise Landscapers specialize in the unique insurance needs of lawn maintenance, tree trimming, and landscape installation businesses in Florida. For more information and for comparative insurance quotes, please visit www.BearWiseLandscapers.com.