Pressure on employers' liability (EL) rates is set to increase if government plans to make employers compensate employees criminally injured at work are implemented.

The plan to transfer compensation from the taxpayer-funded Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme (CICS) to employers is a central plank of proposed reforms for compensating crime victims.

The government has also suggested establishing a fund which will be paid for by a surcharge on fines for offences such as speeding.

An ABI spokesman said that on first glance it appeared that the plans could have a negative impact on EL rates. "It's a fragile market," he said.

According to the consultation paper, in 2002-03 the CICS paid £12m to workers injured by crime.

The majority of payouts were made to police, medical and educational workers, with those in the security and hospitality sectors also receiving compensation.