Workers Compensation Insurance

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Keeping your employees safe at work is important to most business owners. But when a worker does suffer an injury, workers compensation coverage provides your employees with protection they need, and also, provides you with peace of mind.

How Workers Compensation Works

When one of your employees has an accident at work or injures themselves on the job, the immediate well-being of the employee is paramount. This may involve a first-aid kit or calling an ambulance for a life-threatening condition. Once the employee’s injury is taken care of, you and your employee must fill out an incident report and other paperwork documenting the injury.

The process is the same if the employee becomes ill because of an exposure at work. It’s important for the employee to receive the medical care they need right away. Then it’s time to file a workers compensation report to document the illness.

Every state has different regulations on workers compensation, but there is a deadline for filing an incident report. You must report the injury before the deadline. Otherwise, you risk a denial of your claim. The sooner you submit the paperwork, the sooner the claim can be processed.

What Benefits Your Employees Receive

Workers compensation coverage varies from state to state. While it covers medical expenses, ongoing care expenses, and even provides death benefits, it also compensates for lost wages. However, employees don’t usually receive 100% of their lost wages. Instead, it may be closer to two-thirds of the wages they received before the injury if they cannot return to work.

If the injury results in a partial or total disability, your employees may be entitled to long-term compensation through workers compensation insurance. It really depends on the severity of the disability and the type of injury.

Workers compensation is like an airbag for your business. When trouble strikes, it deploys to help your employee get back to work as fast as possible, minimizing the damage to your business.

If that sounds like a luxury to you, keep in mind, it's probably a good thing for your business. Imagine having to pay for a slip-and-fall accident out of your business checking account.

It’s a good thing for you and your employees.

Workers comp insurance may also protect you from being sued by employees for workplace conditions, when a court finds your company liable in causing an injury or illness to your employees.

Eligibility Rules for Employees

To be eligible for benefits under workers compensation, your employee must meet several criteria:

  • They have to be actively employed 
  • Workers compensation must be valid and active
  • The injury or illness must be work-related
  • They have to meet the deadline to report the injury

It’s your responsibility as an employer to make sure your employees are covered under workers compensation. It protects them when something happens, ensuring they can get the medical care they need.

Workers compensation basics

Since workers comp insurance typically only covers injuries or illnesses when they occur as a result of duties performed on the job or while at work, the scope of the coverage of the policy is limited to duties performed by employees.

Injuries that may be covered by workers comp insurance include lifting heavy equipment, slipping on a wet or oily surface, or sustaining injury, due to fires or explosions.

Workers Compensation Insurance may cover:

  • Medical bills for employees hurt or sickened at work
  • Ongoing care, including rehabilitation
  • Wages missed while recovering
  • Employee lawsuits over injuries
  • Funeral expenses, if an employee is killed on the job
  • Death benefits to support the deceased's family

It does not cover:

  • Third-party lawsuits
  • Lawsuits over professional errors
  • Wages for a replacement worker
  • Parental leave benefits
  • OSHA penalties

FAQs about Workers Compensation

Are Part-Time Employees Covered by Workers Compensation?

Yes, you can purchase coverage for your part-time employees. It’s mandatory in most states to provide workers compensation for all of your staff. Your workers compensation insurance does not extend to general contractors. But you must be careful not to mis-classify an employee as a contractor.

How Do You File a Workers Compensation Claim?

After the employee has received the medical attention they need, you need to fill out an injury report. The document is often called a First Report of Injury, and the employee and the employer must sign it. Then you send it to the workers compensation insurance company for processing.

What If the Employee Caused the Accident?

With workers compensation, fault does not matter. The only criteria to receive care under workers compensation insurance is that the injury happened while the employee was working for the employer. Your employees are entitled to workers compensation benefits even if they caused the accident by their own negligence.

Are Employees Covered When They’re Not at the Office?

The employee doesn’t have to be at the office for workers compensation to cover the incident, as long as they performed work for the employer. If the injury occurred on the way to or from work, the employee would not be covered. If they left for personal reasons during working hours and got injured, workers compensation would not apply, either.

Will Workers Compensation Cover Future Problems?

Yes. Workers compensation doesn’t have a time limit for medical benefits. Employees will receive medical benefits as long as they need treatment for their injuries. However, sometimes employees have the option to settle a workers compensation claim for a lump sum. With that, they might give up their rights to future medical benefits.

Worried about the cost?

We specialize in covering local businesses like yours. We have everything you need right here, including:

  • Monthly payment options 
  • Temporary staff coverage 
  • Claims responsiveness 
  • Tailored coverage 
  • Knowledgeable agents 
  • Coverage for contracts 

Let’s Review Your Workers Compensation Coverage

It’s important for you as an employer to provide workers compensation coverage for your staff. Not only is it a legal requirement, but you also want to protect your workforce if they get injured on the job. Our staff at the Walker Insurance Agency can help you find the best coverage for your business that satisfies legal requirements and provides for your employees. Call us today to schedule an appointment with one of our insurance agents.