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Substitute House Bill No. 5340

Public Act No. 04-214

AN ACT CONCERNING LUMP SUM PAYMENTS UNDER THE WORKERS' COMPENSATION ACT AND DISQUALIFICATIONS AND OFFSETS UNDER THE UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION ACT.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 31-302 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

Compensation payable under this chapter shall be paid at the particular times in the week and in the manner the commissioner may order, and shall be paid directly to the persons entitled to receive them unless the commissioner, for good reason, orders payment to those entitled to act for such persons, [; but, when he] except that when the commissioner finds it just or necessary, the commissioner may approve or direct the commutation, in whole or in part, of weekly compensation under the provisions of this chapter into monthly or quarterly payments, or into a single lump sum, which may be paid to the one then entitled to the compensation, and the commutation shall be binding upon all persons entitled to compensation for the injury in question. In any case of commutation, a true equivalence of value shall be maintained, with due discount of sums payable in the future; and, when commutation is made into a single lump sum, (1) the commissioner may direct that it be paid to any savings bank, trust company or life insurance company authorized to do business within this state, to be held in trust for the beneficiary or beneficiaries under the provisions of this chapter and paid in conformity with the provisions of this chapter, and (2) the parties, by agreement and with approval of the commissioner, may prorate the single lump sum over the life expectancy of the injured employee.

Sec. 2. Subdivision (16) of subsection (a) of section 31-236 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2004):

(16) For purposes of subparagraph (B) of subdivision (2) of this subsection, "wilful misconduct" means deliberate misconduct in wilful disregard of the employer's interest, or a single knowing violation of a reasonable and uniformly enforced rule or policy of the employer, when reasonably applied, provided such violation is not a result of the employee's incompetence and provided further, in the case of absence from work, "wilful misconduct" means an employee must be absent without either good cause for the absence or notice to the employer which the employee could reasonably have provided under the circumstances for three separate instances within [an eighteen-month] a twelve-month period. Except with respect to tardiness, for purposes of subparagraph (B) of subdivision (2) of this subsection, each instance in which an employee is absent for one day or two consecutive days without either good cause for the absence or notice to the employer which the employee could reasonably have provided under the circumstances constitutes a "separate instance". For purposes of subdivision (15) of this subsection, "temporary help service" means any person conducting a business that consists of employing individuals directly for the purpose of furnishing part-time or temporary help to others; and "temporary employee" means an employee assigned to work for a client of a temporary help service.

Sec. 3. Subsection (g) of section 31-227 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2004):

(g) With respect to benefit years beginning on or after October 1, 1981, for any week with respect to which an individual is receiving a pension, which shall include a governmental or other pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity, or any other similar periodic payment, under a plan maintained or contributed to by a base period employer, the weekly benefit rate payable to such individual for such week shall be reduced by the prorated weekly amount of the pension. [Where] If contributions were made to the pension plan by the individual, the prorated weekly pension amount shall be reduced by the proportion [which] that such individual's contributions bear to the total of all payments for such individual into the plan, except that if the pension is paid under the Social Security Act, the individual's contributions to the plan shall reduce the prorated weekly pension amount by one hundred per cent. If, as a result of the reduction made under the provisions of this subsection, the individual's weekly benefit rate is not a whole dollar amount, the weekly benefit rate payable to such individual shall be the next lower whole dollar amount. No reduction shall be made under this subsection by reason of the receipt of a pension, except in the case of pensions paid under the Social Security Act or the Railroad Retirement Act of 1974, if the services performed by the individual during the base period for such employer, or remuneration received for such services, did not affect the individual's eligibility for, or increase the amount of, such pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity, or similar payment.

Approved June 3, 2004