NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Workers' Compensation, Wages, and the Risk of Injury

Ronald G. Ehrenberg

NBER Working Paper No. 1538 (Also Reprint No. r1293)
Issued in October 1989
NBER Program(s):   LS

This paper provides an analysis and summary of the effects of the Workers' Compensation (WC) system on wages and work injury experience. It stresses how lessons learned from other forms of social insurance can be applied to research on WC. I begin with a brief overview of the characteristics of the WC system. Next, some simple labor market models are sketched that provide implications about how the system might affect employee compensation and the frequency and duration of both work injuries and reported WC claims.The bilk of the paper critically analyzes the relevant empirical literature, summarizing what we have learned from it and suggesting future research directions.

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Published: New Perspectives in Workers' Compensation, edited by John F. Burton, Jr.,pp. 71-96. New York: ILR Press, 1989.

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