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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri senators want to create an online database for businesses to check whether prospective employees have a history of filing workers' compensation claims.

The bill given first-round approval Tuesday drew support from both Republicans and Democrats who said they hope a database will help stop people from abusing the workers' compensation system by repeatedly filing claims against employers.

Senators said employers already can get information on an applicant's workers' compensation claim. But must do so in writing, which can take a couple weeks. They said an online database could speed up the hiring process, benefiting both workers and bosses.

The state Division of Workers' Compensation says an online database initially would include 554,000 claim records, with about 13,000 records added annually.
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