New DOL Rule Requires Employers to Act

By Bobbie Fox
Associate General Counsel
CopperPoint Insurance Companies

No doubt you have heard about the Department of Labor’s Final Rule effective Dec. 1, 2016 raising the compensation required to qualify for a “white collar” exemption (executive, administrative, and professional) from $23,660 per year to $47,476 per year. What does that mean? It means that if you have an employee that you consider to be exempt from overtime under a white collar exemption, and he or she makes less than $47,476 per year, you need to act in order to keep the exempt status. Continue reading

Workforce Development to Play Integral Role in the Future of Arizona Construction

Bo CalbertBy Bo Calbert 
President
McCarthy Building Companies
Southwest Division

Nationally, 86 percent of construction firms reported having a difficult time finding qualified workers to fill vacant positions, according to a recent Association of General Contractors (AGC) survey. This survey follows an AGC report earlier this year that predicts a shortage of 2.5 million construction workers. The lack of workers is having a negative impact on the industry and impeding the economic recovery, particularly in Arizona.

“This problem is even more staggering in states like Arizona where construction is a major economic engine and fuels numerous other industries,” said Justin Kelton, executive vice Continue reading

Law Curbs Over-prescription of Opioids for Work Comp Patients

Last week Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed SB1283, designed to curb the over-prescription of opioids and benzodiazepines (commonly called tranquilizers) by healthcare providers. The new law requires providers to get patient utilization reports from the state’s prescription monitoring program database before writing a new script for treatment. It also requires provider to make a quarterly check to make sure prescriptions are appropriate for the patient’s use.

Arizona joins 10 other states, including Massachusetts, New York and Tennessee in requiring medical providers to use databases before prescribing narcotics.

However, state law grants healthcare providers a one-year waiver from adhering to the new requirement if the provider says meeting the mandate cannot be done because of technological limitations beyond their control or exceptional circumstances.

Workers comp professionals had pushed for the new law as a way to reduce overuse and patient addiction. The law covers prescriptions for Schedule II, III and IV controlled substances.