News Release WorkSafeNB announces significant benefit enhancements for New Brunswick workers as Bill 45 becomes law

June 7, 2024

WorkSafeNB is pleased to announce that the Government of New Brunswick's Bill 45, An Act Respecting the Firefighters’ Compensation Act and the Workers’ Compensation Act, has received Royal Assent, making it law. These historic benefit improvements, which include an increase in loss of earnings benefits and adjustments to maximum annual earnings, mark a significant milestone in our ongoing commitment to the well-being of our province's workforce.

Once passed, starting July 1, 2024, wage loss benefits for all injured workers will increase from 85% to 90% of net earnings, providing increased financial security as they recover from a workplace injury or illness.

In addition, amendments have been introduced to refine how we calculate Maximum Annual Earnings (MAE). The MAE represents the highest amount of earnings per worker that an employer would pay premiums on and serves as the upper limit for calculating workers' compensation benefits. The updated multiplier, from 1.5 to 1.6, used in the formula will result in more of our clients having their full wages covered, with the MAE set to increase from $76,900 to $82,100.

Injured workers who are currently receiving benefits will receive the increase automatically and are not required to do anything.

Tim Petersen, WorkSafeNB’s president and CEO, said the enhancement aims to ensure that injured workers receive adequate support to meet their needs as they recover.

“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.”

These changes are significant as they align us with other jurisdictions and direct more financial support to injured workers and their families during times of injury or illness.

Today’s announcement follows WorkSafeNB’s recent rate reduction for the provinces employers, striking a balanced approach that benefits both employers and injured workers. Mel Norton, WorkSafeNB’s Board Chairperson, said both are indicators of a healthy workers’ compensation system.

“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.”

Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Greg Turner echoed “We are proud to introduce changes that will see the amount payable to injured workers increase from 85 to 90 per cent of their regular earnings.“

The recommendation to bring forward the legislation followed a comprehensive consultation with workers and employers. WorkSafeNB would like to thank its stakeholders for their active engagement during the consultations, and commend New Brunswick’s workers and employers for their commitment to workplace safety and for supporting return-to-work and stay-at-work initiatives.


About WorkSafeNB:

WorkSafeNB is the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) and Workers' Compensation Board (WCB) for New Brunswick, Canada. We are committed to promoting safe and healthy workplaces and providing support to workers and employers across the province. Our mission is to reduce the risk of workplace injury and illness, and to provide effective compensation and return-to-work services when incidents occur.


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