By Kimberly Daise
Workers’ compensation insurance almost eliminates legal liability (with a few exceptions) on the employer’s part after following a work-related injury. The law allows employees to collect compensation from their employers after suffering an injury at work. This compensation is paid via worker’s compensation insurance.
The whole compensation process is sometimes confusing for the business owner. But for the employer just remember that most of the time the courts tend to rule in favor of the employee. That usually translates to significant payouts for medical expenses and any other expenses related to the injury. For instance, if the court finds the injury was as a result of the employer’s negligence, the injured worker may get a huge compensation, one that can wipe out a small business without workers’ compensation insurance. Make sure you have coverage to minimize or eliminate such liability.
Is it Mandatory?
Workers comp, as it’s often called, is required by nearly every state. Most states, including Florida, require employers to make insurance contributions to compensate workers who might suffer injury or disability while working. To enjoy this service, it is good to check with your state to see what’s required of you as an employer in connection with workers comp.
Note that workers’ compensation insurance only covers injuries resulting from employment. However, if it is discovered that the worker was intoxicated when the accident occurred, he or she may not be able to claim compensation. Some States impose a drug test on injured workers, and if the test comes out positive, the worker doesn’t get compensated. The same goes for self-inflicted accidents, or actions injuries occurring from an employee violating company policy.
Benefits of Workers’ Compensation Insurance for Employers
So far, it appears the workers’ compensation program only benefits employees, but there’s another side to workers’ comp insurance. Employers also stand to gain by paying workers’ compensation insurance.
You Don’t Foot Medical Bills
Workers’ compensation insurance shifts liability from employers to the insurance company. That means you won’t have to drain your bank account to pay for workplace injury compensation.
The Insurance Picks Up All Responsibilities
Secondly, the insurance cover also covers wage replacement. The law mandates employers to pay two-thirds (check the law in your state) of the worker’s average wage. That can amount to a lot of money for a small business. Large enough sums to make the business go belly up or even worse, drive the owner to bankruptcy.
Long-term and Permanent Injuries
The benefit of taking out workers’ compensation insurance is that it covers long-term and permanent injuries. Injuries leading to long-term or permanent disability attract hefty court settlements. The settlement might go as high as millions of dollars. With insurance, the insurance company absorbs all the fiscal liability.
Those are not the only benefits you stand to gain by paying workers comp. There are many other benefits you and your workers enjoy with a worker’s comp cover including but not limited to training programs, safety programs, hiring and worker retention programs, technical and management programs. Worker’s compensation coverage can provide a small business with protection and tools for growth.