May 27, 2019
This past December, employers should have received a letter with a detailed breakdown of their new Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) classification information. The letter is part of a year-long education program to let 300,000 Ontario businesses know about the changes coming into effect Jan. 1, 2020 for the new WSIB premium rate framework.

WSIB is adopting the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) already in use by Statistics Canada and Canada Revenue Agency to classify all employers across Canada.

In addition providing easier administration, the new model uses a two-step approach to setting rates. The first step, called a risk band rate, sets the average rate for each industry class. This rate takes into account the collective experience of all participants in the class to ensure each class is self-sufficient.

The second step, predictability, looks at the businesses individual claim history over the past six years to determine the individual risk associated to that business and how it compares to the rest of the class. This two-step method ensures a fair premium based on an individual employers' risk and history.

The resulting changes are designed to make rates simpler, more fair, more stable, and easier to understand.

How will Occupational Disease (OD) claims be treated under the new model?

Under the new model, Occupational Disease claims will be excluded from your business’ claims record when your premium rate is calculated. How WSIB will define these types of claims will remain unchanged from the definitions currently used. Occupational Disease claims will be factored into the rate-setting process at the class level — which means OD claims will not have an impact at the individual business rate-setting level.

How will businesses find out their predictability in the new model?

Starting in the fall, businesses can request a copy of their extended detailed premium rate statement. This provides a detailed breakdown on how your premium rate was calculated by taking you through each step of the rate calculation process. The statement also shares what your predictability level is.

How do I compare to my peers?

The second phase of Compass will launch this fall. Using an online portal at Compass, businesses will have access via a log-in portal with exclusive insights for their business. Using Compass, you will have access to further insights into how you compare with your industry peers, to help you plan for your workplace health and safety.

Free monthly webinars to help business owners

To help Ontario businesses learn more about the new premium rate-setting model, WSIB is offering monthly webinars providing the latest updates, information on how to prepare for 2020, and an opportunity to ask questions about the coming changes.

The next webinar will take place on June 19. Each webinar will take place at 10:00 a.m. Register for any of the sessions or find a full schedule for upcoming webinars on the WSIB website.

To make any updates to your information or for additional questions about individual classification, please contact WSIB directly at 1-800-387-0750 or email

For links to Compass, Rate Framework Changes explained, or to register for a webinar see RESOURCES below.