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Group Rating Programs


The most desirable BWC rating option for state funded Ohio employers is group rating. Group rating plans allow employers who operate similar businesses to group together to potentially achieve lower premium rates than they could as individual employers. Sponsoring organizations such as chambers of commerce, trade associations, etc., form the group and determine eligibility for those who apply. The group must demonstrate a common purpose and demonstrate proven results from safety and loss-control practices in order to continue to be certified by the BWC.

The BWC adjusts rates for group members taken as a whole, rather than individually, as if the group was one large company. This is the reason that groups are able to typically offer substantially higher discounts to its members than they could see on their own. For employers whose discount level will exceed 25% to 30%, group experience rating typically provides the greatest risk-reward scenario available.

Premium Risk is proud to partner with the Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE) to provide group rating opportunities for our clients and other employers in Northeast Ohio. COSE’s program, provided through the Northeast Ohio Safety Council (NEOSC), is the largest group rated program based in Northeastern Ohio. Total group enrollment exceeds 7,000 employers, which means that COSE’s program offers abundant discount levels in multiple industries for NE Ohio business.


In 2009, the BWC created a new program to help employers reduce their premium obligations. Group Retrospective Rating is a performance based incentive program, with premium reductions based on the overall performance of the grouped employers. Any refunds due are paid after the fact, making this program more reflective of the overall actual costs paid out in claims for group members. Participating employers have the potential to save more money than they could have in the regular group program. For penalty rated employers, group retrospective rating can provide their only opportunity to regain control over increasing premium costs.

    Who Group Retro Might Make Sense For:
  • Penalty Rated Employers or those Projected to be Non-Group Eligible for the Upcoming Rating Year
  • Employers receiving a discount level less than 30%
  • Mid to Larger Sized Employers with Strong Injury Prevention/Safety Programs
  • Higher Risk Industries (Manufacturing/Construction)

COSE is one of few certified sponsors statewide for group retrospective rating. All COSE members who are currently part of the group rated program or apply to the group in the fall will be reviewed automatically for both regular group and group retrospective rating. Those members who would likely see more significant savings will be notified of their eligibility and provided with a detailed savings analysis.