By assuming all normal expected accidental loss, the State is able to optimize the cost efficiencies of a self-insurance program and to directly control the defense and settlement of its claims. With the assistance of a third party administrator, Risk Management is able to provide prompt investigation and fair settlement of liability claims filed by the public and to give all injured state employees and their dependent's timely receipt of any benefits owed under workers' compensation statutes. Replacement cost funding is immediately arranged for prompt repair or renewal of state property and equipment that is damaged or destroyed.
Northern Adjusters is the state's third party claims administrator for all workers' compensation injury and illness claims filed by state employees. Auto, general and airport liability claims are managed by Risk Management claims administrators.
Risk Management claims administrators oversee and manage the day-to-day activities of the third party claims administrator for worker's compensation and injury and illness claims. Through an on-line interactive claims information system they are able to immediately determine the current status of any case and view all payment and reserve transactions. Large or precedental claims are closely monitored through detailed narrative status reports with direct supervision and control by the state. Risk Management performs on-site claim audits, sampling randomly selected claim files to ensure prompt professional and cost effective claims services are continually provided.
For litigation cases, Risk Management funds the Special Litigation (Torts) Section within the Department of Law, presently fourteen assistant attorneys general, six paralegals, and six legal secretary positions. Using state-employed defense attorneys is clearly the most cost effective and operationally efficient method to handle all civil litigation and workers' compensation caseload protected by the Risk Management program. When a conflict of interest arises or if the current caseload demands it, a private defense counsel is retained by individual professional service contract with authority of the Department of Law.
Risk Management claims staff works closely with Department of Law legal staff on defense or settlement decisions in all complex claims and litigation cases.