IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Is Workers' Compensation Disguised Unemployment Insurance?


  • Bernard Fortin
  • Paul Lanoie
  • Christine Laporte


This paper examines how yhe Workers' Compensation (WC) and the Unemployment Insurance (UI) programs interact to influence the duration of claims due to workplace accidents. We use longitudinal WC administrative micro-data on more than 30,000 workers in the Quebec construction industry for the period 1976-1986. Our results show that a reduction in the UI wage replacement ratio is associated with an increase in the duration of claims due to serve accidents that are difficult to diagnose (this category includes severe back-related problems). Also, an increase in the WC replacement ratio leads to an increase in the average duration of claims due to minor accidents that are difficult to diagnose (this category includes minor low-back injuries). Moreover, there seems to be an important seasonal effect in the duration of claims; i.e., the average duration of spells on WC is estimated to be 21.2% higher when an accident occurs in December rather than in July. Ce texte examine comment l'assurance contre les lésions professionnelles (ALP) et l'assurance-chômage (AC) interagissent pour influencer la durée des réclamations pour lésions professionnelles. Nous utilisons des micro-données administratives longitudinales couvrant plus de 30 000 travailleurs du secteur de la construction pour la période 1976-1986. Nos résultats montrent qu'une réduction du taux de remplacement salarial de l'assurance-chômage est associée à une augmentation de la durée des accidents majeurs difficiles à diagnostiquer (cette catégorie inclut les maux de dos majeurs). De plus, un accroissement du taux de remplacement salarial de l'ALP entraîne un accroissement de la durée des accidents mineurs difficiles à diagnostiquer (cette catégorie inclut les lombalgies). Enfin, il semble y avoir un effet saisonnier lié à la durée des périodes d'indemnisation est plus élevée de 21.2% lorsqu'un accident survient en1101 plutôt qu'en0701.

Suggested Citation

  • Bernard Fortin & Paul Lanoie & Christine Laporte, 1995. "Is Workers' Compensation Disguised Unemployment Insurance?," CIRANO Working Papers 95s-48, CIRANO.
  • Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:95s-48

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Dionne, Georges & St-Michel, Pierre, 1991. "Workers' Compensation and Moral Hazard," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(2), pages 236-244, May.
    2. Bernard Fortin & Paul Lanoie & Christine Laporte, 1996. "Unemployment Insurance and the Duration of Workplace Accidents," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(s1), pages 17-24, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Fortin, B. & Lanoie, P., 1998. "Effects of Workers' Compensation : A Survey," Papers 9816, Laval - Recherche en Politique Economique.
    2. Dionne, Georges, 1998. "La mesure empirique des problèmes d’information," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 74(4), pages 585-606, décembre.
    3. Pierre André Chiappori & Bernard Salanié, 2002. "Testing Contract Theory: A Survey of Some Recent Work," CESifo Working Paper Series 738, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Paul Lanoie & Sophie Tavenas, 1995. "Costs and Benefits of Preventing Workplace Accidents: The Case of Participatory Ergonomics," CIRANO Working Papers 95s-38, CIRANO.

    More about this item


    duration; worplace accidents; construction; worker's compensation; unemployment insurance; hazard; durée; accidents du travail; lésions professionnelles; assurance-chômage; construction; hazard;

    JEL classification:

    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
    • J65 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment Insurance; Severance Pay; Plant Closings


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:95s-48. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Webmaster). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.