Workers compensation insurance covers your employee when they become ill or injured while on the job. Bodily injury by disease must be caused or aggravated by the conditions of their employment.

California state law requires an employer to purchase workers compensation even if you only have one part time employee. “Do you need to purchase workers comp when someone works as an independent contractor?” you ask? Determining employee status can be difficult, but California courts, state agencies and insurance carriers use a series of “tests” or questions to be asked in order to determine employee status. You can find a list at http://www.statefundca.com/news/FeatureArticles2010/070210-ContractorVsEE.asp

Ok, so you have an employee and they get hurt on the job. You’d send your employee to the doctors approved by the insurance carrier and file a report. When this happens, there might be investigation by a claims representative in order to confirm that the illness or injury was caused by their employment. Once the case is opened, a claims representative would follow the active case until closed. There are two parts to every claim, the medical costs (doctors visits, ambulance ride etc), and the loss of wages during the period of time an employee is unable to return to work. The case isn’t closed until both parts are complete.

It is important to insurance companies that their business owners maintain safe work places and follow a written safety program (safe practices for your line of work) in order to avoid potential claims.

If you’re considering hiring employees, feel free to contact me for your workers compensation quote at 877-257-1652 or email me at mluckner@orrandassociates.com