The average workers’ compensation assessment rate for New Brunswick employers increased 33 per cent in 2017 over 2016. This dramatic premium increase couldn’t come at a worse time for NB business owners who are facing a mountain of cost increases including higher property taxes, gas and diesel taxes, the land transfer tax, personal income taxes, minimum wage, and most recently a new statutory holiday.
As a result of a member survey, CFIB estimates that the 2017 premium increases cost almost 18 million dollars to SMEs in the province.
Members are telling us, that as a result of these increases they expect:
- A loss of profit (79%),
- To cancel planed pay increases or employees’ benefits (53%),
- To increase prices (49%), and
- To cut back on the number of employees or employee hours (39%)
If that wasn’t difficult enough, WorksafeNB has expressed the possibility of further premium increases for 2018. 95 per cent of survey respondents expressed it would be very or somewhat difficult to absorb any additional WCB costs next year.