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Merit Rating Program


A risk shall be eligible for the Merit Rating Program if it has an average Subject Premium over the last three policy years of $500 or more, unless the risk is eligible for experience rating on either an intrastate or interstate basis. Premiums for eligibility to this program shall be determined in a similar manner to the determination of eligibility for Experience Rating.

The Merit Rating Program approved January 1, 1990 is applicable to both voluntary and assigned risks. The object of the Merit Rating Program is to provide a pricing mechanism for risks too small to qualify for experience rating to share in the loss experience that they generate.

Eligible risks shall receive the following adjustments to their premium, based on the number of lost-time claims over the most recent three policy years.

Number of Lost-Time Claims

Merit Rating Adjustment


5% credit



2 or more

5% debit

The Merit Rating Program Adjustment, expressed as a credit or debit percentage, is applied to the policy's Subject Premium. Refer to the Massachusetts Voluntary Market Premium Algorithm, Appendix E, or the Residual Market Premium Algorithm, Appendix F.

A merit rating credit is reported under the statistical class code 9885. A merit rating debit is reported under the statistical class code 9886.

For more information on the Merit Rating Program, refer to the NCCI's Experience Rating Plan Manual, Massachusetts, State Rule Exceptions.

Program Reference:

January 1, 1990 - The Division of Insurance approved a Merit Rating Program.  (Refer to Circular Letter #1517 dated January 2, 1990 and Circular Letter #1525 dated February 14, 1990.)

Additional Reference:

Circular Letter #1893 dated May 23, 2002 - Revisions to the Massachusetts Specific Rules of the Experience Rating Plan Manual for Workers Compensation and Employers Liability Insurance: Claims directly attributable to the terrorist attacks and reported under catastrophe code 48 are excluded from experience rating and ARAP calculations



Program Overview

The Workers' Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau of Massachusetts
101 Arch Street, 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02110