Governance – Policy Development Policy 41-004 | Effective Date: August 22, 2019


WorkSafeNB has a legislated authority to establish policy. Through policy, WorkSafeNB interprets legislation, constrains or enables discretionary legislation, delegates authority and sets the direction for administrating the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission and Workers’ Compensation Appeals Tribunal Act (WHSCC & WCAT Act). Workers’ Compensation Act (WC Act), and the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHS Act).

All of WorkSafeNB’s policies are binding on both WorkSafeNB staff and the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Tribunal in their decision-making.

The Board is committed to ensuring that, through the policy development process, approved policy aligns with WorkSafeNB’s strategic direction, while balancing the needs and interests of injured workers and employers, and maintaining the intent of the legislation. For more information, see Policy 41-012 Governance – Balancing Decisions.

To achieve that end, the Board receives feedback on policy through consultation with stakeholders. For more information, see Policy 41-003 Governance - Stakeholder Engagement.


  1.  WorkSafeNB establishes an annual policy agenda, identifying those policies which are considered a priority for review or development. Establishing an annual agenda also increases the effectiveness of operationalizing approved policies.
  1. Potential policies for development or review are identified by analyzing:
    • Legislative and/or regulatory changes;
    • Court of Appeal decisions;
    • Strategic initiatives identified to further WorkSafeNB’s goals;
    • Risks;
    • Opportunities to improve benefits and maintain low assessment rates;
    • Decision Review Office recommendations;
    • Internal audits and program evaluations;
    • Operational issues requiring Board direction or significant resourcing; and/or
    • Policies that are approaching the established review cycle.
  1. The annual policy agenda is the result of prioritizing policies, which have been identified for potential development or review, according to:
    • The degree of risk involved in delaying a policy decision;
    • The resource requirements to develop and implement the decisions; and
    • The opportunity to further WorkSafeNB’s strategic goals.
  1. Although the policy agenda is established annually, it may be updated or modified at any time during the year.
  1. Policies identified are reviewed or developed using an information-based, decision-making model. This involves a continuous process of gathering, analyzing, and weighing information. WorkSafeNB gathers information such as: emerging trends, best practices, trends in legislation amendments, Court of Appeal decisions, standards, and guidelines. Through an actuarial financial evaluation and analysis of the information gathered, WorkSafeNB ensures balanced policy positions are achieved, considering the needs and interests of stakeholders, while ensuring policies are based on timely, strategic, credible, and objective information.
  1. The Board approves any new policy, or a policy requiring a review due to its review cycle where the policy determines strategic direction by:
    • Addressing key function(s) of the board;
    • Guiding investment and rate setting;
    • Setting principles for the system;
    • Establishing intake eligibility and continued eligibility; or
    • Establishing discretionary benefits.
  1. In the Board’s oversight of discretionary benefits, the Board approves all claim-related fee schedules.
  1. The Board will also approve policies identified for review due to:
  1. All other policies are delegated to the CEO for approval.
  1. The CEO will recommend that a policy, initially delegated to the CEO, be approved by the Board where the CEO determines that there is a:
    • Significant change due to a legislative amendments to the governing Acts;
    • Material financial impact on WorkSafeNB;
    • Significant financial impact on employers or injured workers;
    • Need for a legislative amendment; or
    • Matter that requires board approval as determined by the CEO’s discretion.
  1. Policies approved by the CEO are reported to the Board by the President/CEO at the next scheduled board meeting.
  1. WorkSafeNB communicates policy decisions to clients, service providers, and other stakeholders by publishing policies in both official languages on WorkSafeNB’s website.
  1. Approved policies will be translated and posted to the external website on their effective date.


Policies – document that is an interpretation of legislation or regulations and gives direction for the operation of WorkSafeNB.

Fee schedules – document that contains approved rates for reimbursement of services, expenses, allowances or service charges.

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