Participants of the Fund must be a member of the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association. The majority of payroll must fall into one of the following classifications:
- Delis | Sandwich Shops | Coffee Shops
- Family-Style | Fast Food
- Casual Dining | Fine Dining
- Bars | Banquet Facilities
- Hotels | Motels | Inns (franchised & non-franchised)
- Fund members pay premiums into the Fund. Premiums are determined based on the payroll and loss experience of member.
- The Fund invests premiums until they are needed.
- Approximately 25% of premiums go towards operating expenses and the purchase of excess insurance.
- The remainder of collected premiums are dedicated to member claims.
- Premium that is not used to pay fund expenses or claims is returned back to the members, along with any investment income earned.
History of the Fund
The MRL Fund was formed December 1, 1992 as the Michigan Restaurant Association Self-Insured Workers' Compensation Fund (MRA SIWCF). It was endorsed as a program available exclusively to members of the Michigan Restaurant Association (MRA).
Initially there were 120 members in the Fund. The Fund grew quickly and soon had members in every county in Michigan. By January 1, 1999 the Fund had expanded to include members of the Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association and changed its name to the Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Fund (MRL Fund). Today the Fund has over 1,000 members representing over 2,500 of the finest restaurant and hotel operators in every corner of the state.
How the Fund Works
The MRL Fund, administered by RPS Regency, is owned by its members and operates similar to an insurance company – providing the same employer protection and paying claims to employees injured on the job. The key difference is that it saves members money by operating with reduced overhead expenses and applies the savings to the group’s premium, leaving more money to pay for claims. The money that is not used to pay for claims, and any investment income, is returned back to the members over time. As the Fund ages, members receive profit returns from a number of Fund years. Members receive average profit returns equal to 48% of their premium. The MRL Fund is protected from large losses by the purchase of excess loss insurance to further enhance its stability and profitability.
For most members, the money savings is the primary reason they insure with the MRL Fund. It has proven to dramatically reduce the overall costs of their workers’ compensation insurance.