New Hampshire Business Review: Governor vetoes workers’ comp changes for partially disabled employees
Gov. Chris Sununu vetoed Senate Bill Senate Bill 99 on Friday, saying his action would prevent upward pressure on workers’ compensation premiums but bill supporters said would not allow partially disabled employees to be made “whole.”
The veto and fight over it, which will play out on the Senate, and perhaps the House floor next week, hinges on the addition of two words in the definition of gainful employment: “similarly remunerative.” But the controversy dates to a state Supreme Court opinion in 2010.
Under the state’s workers’ compensation law, partially disabled workers can return to work with a position that would be “gainful employment,” a job that might have fewer hours or has some accommodation, – perhaps a desk job or a job with less stress, depending on the injury. If that position pays less than then previous job, then the workers’ compensation would pay 60% of lost income, the same amount paid to someone totally disabled.