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Things You Need to Know about Workers Compensation Insurance for Small Businesses

Workers Compensation Insurance for Small Businesses
Workers Compensation Insurance for Small Businesses

By law, employers, including owners of small businesses, are responsible for providing their employees with a safe working environment. No matter what business your company is engaged in, accidents can happen. It is supported by the fact that there are 2.8 cases of occupational injuries for every 100 full-time private industry employees. With more than 150 million people in the American workforce, the number of occupational injuries could blow up even if it is only less than 3%.

In its effort to protect the health and well-being of workers who get sick or injured in the course of their employment, the government-mandated the workers’ compensation program.

Generally, all employers regardless of business size are required by law to take responsibility for the cost of medical treatment of employees who are injured in the performance of their duties.

Workers’ compensation insurance which is also known as workers comp or workman’s comp is a type of insurance that covers the medical treatment and rehabilitation costs as well as lost wages of employees who are injured at work or in the course of their employment.

Having employees covered by workers compensation insurance is an excellent management decision. It allows them to pass this responsibility on to their insurers and still be compliant with the law. Working with a reliable medical provider network can help employers with the legwork needed to facilitate the medical and documentary needs of their injured employees.

Aside from complying with a government mandate, most employers have the resources to mitigate the risk of work-related injuries. But safety and accident prevention measures are not a guarantee that accidents will not happen. Having workers covered by workers comp is the most effective solution to the possibility of a workplace accident, as it can provide business with some financial relief when accidents resulting in employee injuries happen.

Workers’ compensation insurance is your assurance to your employees that they will be provided with medical treatment when they are injured at work. It can also offer your business a certain degree of protection from financial bankruptcy when several of your workers get ill or injured due to a catastrophic event in your workplace. But it can get better if you partner with a competent workers compensation provider network that is always ready to facilitate efficient medical care for your injured employees.

While workman’s compensation covers the cost of employees injured on the job, we need to understand that there are two other types of insurance that cover other types of work-related medical cases. These are group health insurance and general liability insurance.

In the context of workman’s compensation, employees who experience or suffer from work-related injury can qualify for workers’ comp benefits regardless of who was at fault. Any employee who got ill or injured in the course of their employment can avail of workers’ compensation benefits if they meet these conditions:

  • The employee is eligible for the benefits
  • The illness or injury is work-related

Illnesses or injuries sustained by customers, vendors, and visiting individuals who are not employees of a company are not covered by workers’ comp. They are covered by general liability insurance.

Relatively, injuries or illnesses experienced by employees that are not work-related are not covered by workman’s comp either. These are typically covered by individual or group health insurance.

Aside from medical bills, workers’ compensation also covers other costs. These are:

  • Payment for lost wages while the employee is not able to work due to the injury. The amount of compensation is usually about 2/3 of the employee’s regular salary.
  • A part of the cost needed to rehabilitate, retrain, or compensate for the permanent injury of an employee (ex. Loss of a finger or limb, partial blindness)
  • Death benefits are given to the dependents and beneficiaries of the employee who was killed on the job.

Despite their responsibility to pay for the treatment, rehabilitation, and lost wages of employees who got injured on the job, there are instances when this is not applicable. Workers’ compensation does not pay for workers’ medical treatment if:

  • The injuries are self-inflicted, or the injured employee was the one who started a fight.
  • The employee sustained the injury while committing a crime.
  • The injury resulted from the employee’s violation of company policy.
  • The injury is not work-related.

Who Regulates Workers’ Compensation Insurance for Small Businesses?

Workers’ compensation insurance is governed by state laws. While these laws vary by state, all employers regardless of company size are required to comply with the workers’ compensation law. While this is the general rule, an employer’s responsibility to provide workers’ compensation insurance can depend on some factors including:

  • The number of employees that qualify for workers’ compensation
  • The type of your business
  • The type of work your employees perform

What Type of Workers is not Eligible for Workers Compensation Insurance?

While some states require businesses to reach a minimum size to be required to carry workers compensation insurance, other states require companies to have workers comp even if they only have one employee.

Most employees are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits except:

  • Independent contractors
  • Seasonal workers
  • Part-time domestic workers (maids, nannies, etc.)
  • Gardeners, masons, carpenters, and other workers who are temporarily hired by a homeowner to perform a specific work.
  • Some agricultural workers.
  • Volunteers
  • The employer’s relatives working in his/her company.

Why Should You Cover Your Employees with Workers Compensation Insurance?

As an employer, you should carry workers’ compensation insurance because it is mandated by law. You must comply with it to avoid getting penalized or sued by your employees or their families especially if an employee dies or gets injured in the workplace. The consequences of your failure to provide your business with workers compensation insurance could be financially devastating to you.

The most practical way to avoid the stress and problems arising from workplace injuries is to carry workers’ compensation insurance and work with a trusted medical provider network. This will make things easier for you and your injured employee.

At the end of the day, you will gain peace of mind knowing that your employee’s medical care needs are taken care of should they get injured while at work.

Working with a reputable workers compensation provider network will assure you that someone is taking responsibility for your injured worker’s welfare while making sure that the costs associated with their medical care are monitored and contained.

We can make workers compensation give out the best for you and your injured worker.

Call us at (866) 214-5920.

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