The story of responsible nonsubscription began nearly two decades ago when a group of businesses that provided workplace injury benefits outside of the workers' compensation system gathered in Austin to form an association.
The nonsubscriber option had existed since the inception of workers’ compensation in 1913 but many businesses did not elect to operate as a
nonsubscriber until the mid 1980's when employers voiced concern over the cost and quality of workers'
compensation. During this same period, employers and a limited number
of industry professionals—many for the first times—began to work to
establish what some referred to as "alternative" injury benefit
These nonsubscribing employers also wanted to take a stand against another group of special interest looking to enact laws to force all businesses to
utilize the workers’ compensation system - even those businesses that were succeeding in providing benefits as nonsubscribers. At the time, Texas held the distinction as being the most
expensive workers’ compensation system in the nation while many Texas
employers and their employees were very dissatisfied with the workers’ compensation system.
As the cost of workers’ compensation spiraled out of control, these
early nonsubscribers were succeeding at providing quality occupational
injury benefits at a much more reasonable cost. They adopted a
responsible nonsubscriber injury benefit programs to address medical, wage
loss, disability and other benefit needs.
TXANS founding members felt the protection of Texas’ elective system
was imperative to their success since many employers expressed concern
that a mandatory system was cost prohibitive and would put them out of
During TXANS first meeting the association’s founding members made
important decisions that continue to serve nonsubscribing employers
and their employees. The most important was the decision that TXANS
would only support efforts to preserve the nonsubscriber option for
businesses that provide quality injury benefits as a responsible
Although some associate the word "responsible" to
define almost any program to provide nonsubscriber benefits, TXANS
defines a responsible nonsubscriber program as a program that specifically includes:
- A workplace safety program designed to meet the unique needs of the nonsubscribing business.
- A well documented responsible nonsubscriber occupational injury benefit plan that
establishes the provision of workplace injury benefits.
- A program that communicates the programs elements to employees.
- Benefit funding, which is typically secured through insurance or a combination of
self-funded and insured benefits.
- Employer/employee selection of quality medical providers to provide exceptional care for
- A program to manage benefit claims
- Programs to prevent and address disputes in a manner that is fair to both employees and
- Regulatory compliance, both state and federal.
TXANS would also refrain from “selling” employers on becoming a
nonsubscriber. TXANS would operate as an association whose views are
directly aligned with its members and not biased toward any particular
service. In addition, TXANS would not compete with the industry
professionals that offer products and services for Texas
nonsubscribers. Instead TXANS established the TXANS Supplier program to invite the participation of industry specialists while serving their need with a unique set of benefits.
TXANS also does not oppose the workers' compensation system as an
injury benefit option. The association does however advocate for employers electing to establish
responsible nonsubscriber injury benefit programs as another means for
providing quality occupational injury benefits. Successful
nonsubscriber programs serve to augment the system because they
provide employers another means to provide injury benefits and survive
excessive workers’ compensation costs.
TXANS was also charged with providing a vast array of educational
programs, publications, regulatory assistance, networking
opportunities and more to establish a community of employers and
industry professionals that support TXANS endeavor through their
participation in TXANS.
TXANS’ history and goals are evident in the association’s mission
statement which is "To promote the use of sound and ethical practices relating
to injury prevention and the provision of quality workplace injury
benefits by Texas nonsubscribers. TXANS shall provide specialized
programs and services to help Texas employers succeed as a responsible
nonsubscriber while working with law and policy makers to preserve the
freedom to choose quality injury benefit options as a responsible
For nearly twenty years TXANS has served literally thousands of
nonsubscribing businesses and industry professionals with hundreds of
educational meetings, thousands of pages of nonsubscriber-related news
and information and a successful government affairs advocacy program.
Thank you for taking the time to learn about TXANS and the history of responsible nonsubscriber programs. We invite you to
join the effort to protect the important nonsubscriber option and begin
receiving TXANS vast array of benefits and services by participation
as a TXANS member or supplier.
A list of member benefits is available here. Supplier benefits can be