Workers' compensation laws are enforced on a state-by-state basis. In the 1920s, California made having workers' compensation insurance mandatory for all employers, even if these employees had one or even no employees (for example, a roofer who works on houses he does not own). As a result, if an employee gets hurt on the job at your work site, they can be paid out for their injuries and medical bills through workers' compensation insurance. In return, the worker does not sue your company. In essence, workers' compensation insurance is a responsible way to keep your employees safe on the job while avoiding the headaches of lawsuits.
Workers' compensation insurance works by covering employees under six separate tiers: medical expenses, benefits in lieu of temporary disability, benefits in lieu of permanent disability, supplemental benefits in the event an employee must be displaced from their job, benefits for retraining employees that require it, and death benefits. Essentially, California workers' comp insurance is designed to kick in during any possible time when a worker may not be able to complete their job due to accidental injury or death. The insurance covers part-time employees as well but not necessarily independent contractors. Always check the specific language of your policy to determine if you have adequate coverage. Better yet, review your coverage with one of our insurance brokers.
The first and most important thing to remember is if an accident occurs at your workplace, failing to report a claim violates California law. It is also illegal to fire or reprimand an employee if that employee files a workers' compensation claim. To file a claim, you must fill out form DWC 1 within one working day and form DLSR 5020 within 5 working days. A copy of the DWC 1 is given to your employee while the DLSR 5020 goes to your claims administrator. Be sure to keep the lines of communication open between you, your employee, and your claims administrator.
If you’re ready to get started on finding the right workers' compensation insurance at a price you can afford, call us to speak with one of our workers' compensation insurance brokers today.