State News : Tennessee

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Select a state from the dropdown menu below to scroll through the state specific archives for updates and opinions on various workers’ compensation laws in your state.


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Tennessee

WIMBERLY LAWSON WRIGHT DAVES & JONES, PLLC

  931-372-9181

June 2024

Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Legislative Changes

The 2024 year brings the following legislative updates to Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Law: Public Chapter 532; Public Chapter 666; Public Chapter 0813; Public Chapter 492; Public Chapter 498; and Public Chapter 499. These legislative changes range from clarifications to filing First Reports of Injury, to extensions of the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation’s authority to enforce laws.

The first of several updates in recent Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Law finds its place in the Public Chapter 532. This Bill was signed by Governor Lee on March 7, 2024, and becomes effective on July 1, 2024. This Bill amends current Tennessee laws to make a consistent, uniform period of 14 days for electronic filing for the First Report of Injury to the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC), as well as removing the Notice of Controversy form requirement – a filing is now made electronically via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). This Bill further provides clarification that uninsured motorist penalties apply to construction and non-construction entities. Finally, this Bill extends the sunset of PC 189 (2021) until July 1, 2029 – allowing the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation to continue to enforce workers’ compensation insurance coverage laws.

Another legislative change is Public Chapter 666. This Bill enacts the Tennessee Self-Insurers’ Guaranty Association Act, creating the Tennessee Self-Insurers’ Guaranty Association – a nonprofit, unincorporated legal entity. The purpose of this Act is to provide for a streamlined and more efficient process for the payment of self-insured workers’ compensation claims. It will also serve as an avenue for the assessment of costs of the protection among those self-insured. This Bill was signed by Governor Lee on April 9, 2024, and became effective upon signing.

The legislative updates continue with Public Chapter 0813. This Bill requires the Comptroller of the Treasury (COT) to conduct a study of all insurers – including insurance pools – that provide policies of workers’ compensation coverage to local government entities. This will include a review of solvency and a comparative rate study. The Bill additionally requires the COT to report the findings to the Speaker of the Senate and the House of Representatives by January 1. 2025. This was signed by Governor Lee on April 29, 2024, and became effective immediately.

The final legislative updates for 2024 lie in Public Chapter 492, Public Chapter 498, and Public Chapter 499. These, respectively, (1) extend the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation to June 30, 2029; (2) extend the Medical Advisory Committee to June 30, 2029; and (3) extend the Medical Payment Committee to June 30, 2029.

Each of the preceding bills have been signed by Governor Bill Lee, and are either effective July 1st, or were effective upon their signing.

For any questions, please contact:

Fredrick R. Baker, Member
Brendan Walsh, Associate
Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones, PLLC
1420 Neal Street, Suite 201
P.O. Box 655
Cookeville, TN 38503-0655
Phone: 931-372-9123
Fax:  931-372-9181
fbaker@wimberlylawson.com
bwalsh@wimberlylawson.com
www.wimberlylawson.com