Montana’s largest workers’ compensation provider announced a rate reduction and $20 million dividend for policyholders Wednesday.
Montana State Fund, a quasi-public-private program, announced its 22,000 policy holders will receive a portion of the $20 million dividend with the average payment around $900, although it will range from $18 to more than $325,000, according to a news release.
MSF also announced a 10% average rate reduction for policyholders.
In a statement, MSF President and CEO Laurence Hubbard said that last fall, the company’s board of directors opted for a “conservative” dividend of $20 million due to uncertainty around the coronavirus pandemic. Plans called for that dividend to be revisited at the spring board meeting.
"I am excited to announce that the board has declared an additional $20 million dividend payable to policyholders by the end of May,” he said. “It is our hope that these funds are able to help Montana employers continue to weather the storm of COVID-19."
About a year ago MSF began offering grants to policyholders for personal protective equipment. That included about 2,000 eligible entities, including firefighters, EMT’s, law enforcement, grocery and drug stores and health care workers.
MSF noted that the dividends are “a direct result of better-than-expected investment performance and positive workplace safety results,” rather than an overcharging of rates.
MSF has issued more than $326 million in dividends since 1999, with the bulk coming after 2015. In 2020 policyholders saw a $20 million dividend, $30 million in 2019 and $40 million in both 2018 and 2017, according to a company fact sheet.
Tom Kuglin is the deputy editor for the Lee Newspapers State Bureau. His coverage focuses on outdoors, recreation and natural resources.