New Brunswick to boost compensation for injured workers

New Brunswick increases benefits for injured workers, raising compensation and maximum earnings limits

New Brunswick to boost compensation for injured workers

New Brunswick has proposed changes to enhance benefits for injured workers, as reported by the Human Resources Director. 

The provincial government plans to amend legislation to increase the compensation available to injured workers.   

“We are proud to introduce changes that will see the amount payable to injured workers increase from 85 to 90 percent of their regular earnings,” said Greg Turner, minister of post-secondary education, training, and labour.  

“The strong funding position we have helped WorkSafeNB obtain will also allow for an increase to the maximum annual earnings of injured workers.” 

  Tim Petersen, WorkSafeNB’s president and CEO, welcomed these changes.  

“Increasing the loss of earnings benefit is a significant step towards providing greater financial stability for those who need it most, when they need it most. This will give injured workers added peace of mind and help them focus on their rehabilitation,” he stated.   

A recent report highlighted that Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) might need to pay substantial retroactive compensation due to a new interpretation of “suitable work available in the job market” for injured foreign workers.   

In New Brunswick, WorkSafeNB is also updating how it calculates Maximum Annual Earnings (MAE). The MAE represents the highest amount of earnings on which employers pay premiums and serves as the cap for workers' compensation benefits.  

The multiplier for calculating MAE is increasing from 1.5 to 1.6, raising the MAE from $76,900 to $82,100. This change means more workers will have their full wages covered starting in 2025.   

These legislative updates follow WorkSafeNB’s recent reduction in employer rates, highlighting a balanced approach to meet stakeholder needs while maintaining system sustainability.  

Mel Norton, WorkSafeNB’s board chairperson, commented, “We have carefully balanced the needs of our stakeholders with the sustainability of our system, with stable assessment rates for employers, while providing the benefits our injured workers and their families deserve.”   

The proposed changes are based on reviews and consultations with workers and employers and aim to align New Brunswick with other jurisdictions. The legislative amendments will affect the Workers’ Compensation Act and the Firefighters’ Compensation Act, taking effect on July 1 if approved.   

Ontario and British Columbia have also recently improved benefits for firefighters, reflecting a broader trend in enhancing worker compensation across Canada.