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Colorado: Supreme Court Says $841,200 for Failure to Maintain Workers’ Comp Insurance May Be Unconstitutionally Excessive

June 16, 2019 (1 min read)

Stressing that the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against the imposition of “excessive fines” applies not only to fines that are levied against individuals, but also against corporations, the Supreme Court of Colorado, with one partially dissenting justice, ordered the remand of a case in which the state’s Division of Workers’ Compensation imposed a fee totaling $841,200 against an employer for failure to maintain workers’ compensation insurance. Indicating the fine needed to be proportional to the harm or risk of harm caused by each day of noncompliance and not merely a blind computation from the statutory schedule, the Court said the Division should review a number of factors in the case, including the ability of the employer to pay the fine.

Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).

LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance.

See Colorado Dept. of Labor and Empl., Div. of Workers’ Comp. v. Dami Hospitality, LLC, 2019 CO 47(June 3, 2019)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 102.02.

Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law

For a more detailed discussion of the case, see