Evaluation of California’s Permanent Disability Rating Schedule

Interim Report

by Robert T. Reville, Seth A. Seabury, Frank W. Neuhauser

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Abstract

In a series of studies for the California Commission on Health and Safety and Workers’ Compensation, the Institute for Civil Justice has examined the adequacy of permanent partial disability benefits, the workers’ compensation court system, and medical fee schedules. Here, the authors focus on California’s permanent disability rating schedule, which is at the center of legislative debates on how to reduce the costs of the state’s workers’ compensation system. The authors examine whether the system ensures that the highest compensation goes to the most severely disabled and how it can be changed to improve outcomes for injured workers and employers.

The research described in this briefing was prepared for the California Commission on Health and Safety and Workers' Compensation and performed within the RAND Institute for Civil Justice.

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