Workers’ Comp Employer Obligations

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A Workers’ Compensation Guide for Employers

workers' compensation guide for employers In most states, employers need to have workers' compensation insurance to help cover an employee’s work-related injury or illness. Some workers’ compensation benefits include paying for:
  • Medical treatments
  • Ongoing care costs
  • Funeral expenses
  • Disability payments
  • Lost wages
When it comes to workers’ comp employer obligations, you’ll likely need to buy coverage through a state-funded program or private insurance company, like us. To learn more, get a quote today.

What Are Employer Obligations Relating to Workers’ Compensation?

States have different requirements for workers’ comp coverage, but you’ll generally need to follow these steps:

1. Get Workers' Compensation Coverage

Before you get coverage, you’ll need to see if your state is monopolistic or competitive. Monopolistic states require you to get coverage from a state fund, like in Wyoming, Ohio, Washington or North Dakota. Competitive states let you choose between a state fund or a private insurer. Some of these states include California, Hawaii or Maine.
If you’re in a competitive state, and you choose a policy from us, you’ll not only get comprehensive coverage, you’ll also get:
  • A preferred medical provider network
  • Access to more than 65,000 pharmacies
  • Pay-as-you-go billing solutions
  • Opportunities to work with nurse care managers
These features give you and your employees coverage for your unique needs. Our goal is to help your employees get back on their feet by providing the right care and attention. We also provide workers’ comp insurance for small businesses that can help you lower your insurance cost.

2. Post a Notice of Compliance

Posting a notice of compliance with workers’ compensation laws can help your employees respond if someone is injured on the job. This document should include important information like your insurance carrier and effective date of your policy. Your employees can use this to give health care providers insurance information if an accident occurs.

3. Meet State Workers’ Compensation Board Requests

Your state’s workers’ compensation board is responsible for reviewing workers’ compensation claims and helping decide if they’re covered or not. They’ll likely request information on your employee and their injury or illness. It’s important to make sure you provide them with accurate information to prevent any delays.

4. Ensure Medical Treatment Is Immediately Available

To help your business stay prepared for any injuries or illnesses, you’ll want to:
  • Keep first-aid supplies stocked and easily accessible
  • Train employees and managers on emergency response plans
  • Keep updated emergency contacts on file for your employees
However, if a worker becomes injured or ill on the job, you’ll need to respond immediately by calling 911.

5. Report the Injury

In some states, employers need to file a “report of injury” if their injured workers need medical care that goes beyond first aid, or if they need more than two treatments from a doctor. If your state requires this report, you’ll need to mail it to your nearest workers’ compensation board office and provide a copy of it to your insurance company. If you don’t, you’ll have to pay a fine or you may be found guilty of a misdemeanor.

6. Do Not Retaliate

As an employer, it’s also important to never retaliate for a workers’ compensation claim, because that’s discrimination against your employee who filed the claim.

Penalties for Employer Workers’ Compensation Requirements Not Followed

employer workers compensation Workers’ compensation employer obligations include having enough coverage for your business and employees. Most states require workers’ comp coverage, but each has different laws. For example, some states don’t require you to get coverage for any independent contractors you hire.
If you don’t provide workers’ comp, you may face penalties, such as:
  • Fines: Your state decides how much of a fine you pay for not having workers’ compensation insurance. Generally, the longer you’ve gone without coverage, the higher it is.
  • Prosecution: You may face criminal charges for not providing workers’ comp insurance to your employees.
  • Lawsuits from injured employees: If your employees get a work-related injury or illness, they can sue you if you don’t have the right coverage.
On top of these penalties, you can also be financially responsible for the costs of medical expenses and disability payments for work-related injuries. Without workers’ comp, you’d have to pay out of pocket for expensive medical bills if one of your employees:
  • Suffers an injury while stocking shelves and has a permanent disability.
  • Slips and falls in your office and needs physical therapy.
  • Breaks an arm in an accident while driving to a customer’s house.

More Employer Workers’ Comp Information

To learn more about workers’ compensation and the small business insurance you need, get a workers’ compensation insurance quote from us today.
The Hartford shall not be liable for any damages in connection with the use of any information provided on this page. Please consult with your insurance agent/broker or insurance company to determine specific coverage needs as this information is intended to be educational in nature.
The information contained on this page should not be construed as specific legal, HR, financial, or insurance advice and is not a guarantee of coverage. In the event of a loss or claim, coverage determinations will be subject to the policy language, and any potential claim payment will be determined following a claim investigation.
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