According to OSHA, there were 5,333 workers who died in 2019 while performing their work duties. This is the equivalent of 100 people a week or 15 per day. Whether you are a huge corporation or a small business, it is important to be knowledgeable on your individual state’s workers’ compensation requirements. If you do not follow the state law, you may be subject to penalties or find yourself the defendant in a lawsuit.
One question you may have is whether you need to provide workers’ compensation insurance for your part-time employees. Read on for everything you need to know about this important insurance.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits the Employer
Many people view workers’ compensation as a benefit for the employee. Both the employer and employee benefit from this coverage.
The benefit to your employees is no-fault insurance coverage on the job. This means they do not have to prove fault or negligence by the company to receive coverage. Workers’ comp covers their medical expenses and wage loss during recovery.
As an employer, you have a legal obligation to carry workers’ compensation insurance. If an employee becomes injured on the job, insurance covers injury-related expenses.
Employers have protection against the risk of a liability lawsuit. The employee may sue for failure to pay expenses. That lawsuit is against workers’ compensation, not your company.
Which Employees Receive Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
The requirement for workers’ compensation coverage is dependent upon a person’s employment status. It doesn’t matter whether they are a seasonal employee, a part-time employee, or work full-time. There is always the risk of an employee suffering injury while working. It doesn’t matter whether they are a seasonal employee, a part-time employee, or work full-time. There is always the risk of an employee suffering injury while working.
An exception is when the person providing services is not an employee. This includes housekeeping services and lawn maintenance providers. Family members of the employer also generally do not require coverage.
Temporary workers are eligible for coverage under workers’ compensation insurance. In Florida, the employment agency is responsible for providing workers’ compensation insurance. The exception is if the placement agency and your company have a different agreement.
Employers normally do not need to provide workers’ compensation insurance for independent contractors. This is a person who performs work or provides a service to you as a non-employee. Independent contractors make their own social security and medicare payments to the government.
Determining if Someone is an Independent Contractor
How to determine if a person is an employee requiring workers’ compensation:
- An independent contractor determines how their work is done
- Independent contractors do not take instruction from you on how to do their work
- An independent contractor provides their own equipment and tools for their work
- A person is an employee if you provide tools or devices for them to do their work
- Independent contractors receive payment on an hourly or project basis
- If a person is receiving payment for work from the employer on a regular payment plan, they are an employee
- A contractor is doing work that is outside your normal course of business
- A contractor does work that is relative to the contractor’s trade or occupation
You may still have questions on whether or not a person is an employee. Contact an attorney or your insurance provider. They can advise on current laws in your state.
Florida Worker Compensation Requirements
Florida requirements for workers’ compensation insurance vary depending on the type of industry. Workers’ compensation enforcement is handled by the Bureau of Compliance. Failure to have workers’ compensation insurance subjects you to penalties.
You must have coverage if you are a:
Construction Industry businesses with one or more employees. This includes the owner who is a corporate officer or LLC member. Check the Florida Administration Code 69L-6-021 if you are not sure whether your business falls within the construction industry.
Non-Construction Industry businesses that employ four or more persons. This includes business owners who serve as corporate officers to the business. It also applies to owners who are LLC members.
The exception is sole proprietors or partners of a partnership. They are not employees unless they choose to be included in the business workers’ comp policy. If participating they must file form DWC-251 with the Division of Workers’ Compensation.
Agricultural Industry has two divisions. They need coverage if they have six regular employees or twelve seasonal employees. Coverage is required if those employees work in excess of 30 days during a season. Those workers must not work more than 45 days during the calendar year.
Out-of-State Employees must notify their insurance carrier that they are working in Florida. If they do not have insurance, then they must obtain Florida workers’ compensation. They may be able to use their home state’s workers’ comp under special circumstances.
Contractors must make sure all sub-contractors have workers’ compensation insurance. They cannot begin a project until they have coverage. Documentation from a sub-contractor falls under Florida Administrative Code 69L-6-032.
The contractor is liable if injuries or death occur and there is no workers’ comp insurance. This includes payment for all medical expenses and wage loss.
Things to Remember
When you own a business there are specific things you must remember:
- Every state except Texas requires employers to maintain workers compensation insurance
- There are specific state requirements for all employers
- Employers must post notices notifying employees of their workers’ compensation rights
- Not every worker meets workers’ compensation requirements, including independent contractors
- You may not be liable for injuries if an employee suffers injuries while committing a crime
- You may not be liable for injuries if an employee is flouting company policy
- Workers’ compensation does not protect you from all liability in work injuries
- Employees may sue you for damages beyond workers’ compensation, such as OSHA violations
When questions arise contact your workers’ compensation provider. For legal questions contact an employment lawyer.
Make Sure You Are Covered
You have a legal obligation to provide workers compensation insurance to all employees. Contact National Workman’s Comp for information about the benefits of coverage.
Located in Coral Gables, Florida, we look forward to assisting you with your workers’ compensation insurance needs. We also offer owner only workers’ comp for single employee employers. This is ideal for those in need of proof of workers’ compensation insurance to do work on a job-site.
Contact us at (855) 852-0128 for more information or request a quote. It only takes five minutes!