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A new Bill (Senate Bill No. 572), introduced in the Missouri State Senate by Senator Tom Dempsey and backed by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce, is an attempt to cut the state's budget deficit and, in turn, save the Second Injury Fund from further financial troubles.  Unfortunately, if passed, it would mean it may be harder to prove a person is disabled by changing the guidelines of what is considered a disability and therefore limit who would receive workers' compensation benefits and Second Injury Fund benefits.  Those against the new bill argue that it simply makes it easier for an employer to avoid paying benefits to injured workers.  Those for the bill argue that by changing which disabilities are covered under workers' compensation laws, employers will save money and therefore, it will save jobs.  This bill would also make it illegal for an employee to sue a co-worker when that co-worker is the cause of the incident that caused the first employee's disability.  Many wonder if the bill would have the outcome sought by those who back it, an increase in jobs and a decrease in the amount of money the State of Missouri would pay through the Second Injury Fund.  Two nonpartison actuarial studies have said that simply reverting back to the pre-2005 law would save the Second Injury Fund and avoid changing any guidelines that may jeopardize an injured employee's rights to benefits.
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