Are Your Workers Covered?

This article refers to Austrailia’s Workers Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 where it was legislated about which workers need to be covered by compensation insurance.  While the laws in the US are passed down at the state level and can vary from state to state, the primary applicaiton referred to in this article applies.  

However, for more detail about how workers compensation insurance applies to your state, please refer to your state’s Workers Compensation Board.

It is generally known by employers that they must have appropriate levels of Workcover insurance for all of their ‘workers’. However, what is not so well understood is the definition of what constitutes a ‘worker’ for Workcover purposes.

This definition does not appear so clear particularly when it comes to businesses that are employing contractors. For most business dealings and arrangements the hiring of contractors is generally considered as a different employment arrangement than that of standard employee – employer agreements.

In recent times contracting and the employment of contractors, as opposed to employees, has become a lot more common practice across a range of industries of the business community. As a result of the current economic climate businesses are employing more and more contractors as it can prove to be a more cost effective exercise.

Where employers can find themselves in trouble is when it comes to gaining Workcover insurance for all of their ‘workers’. Under Section 11 (1) of the Workers Compensation and Rehabilitation Act 2003 a ‘worker’ is defined as ‘…a person who works under a contract of service.’

Whilst the Act does go on to specify who is and is not considered to be a ‘worker’ in particular circumstances it can generally be said that contractors who are providing a service to their employer are considered to be ‘workers’ for Workcover purposes.

Furthermore, Section 48 (1) of the Act outlines every ‘worker’ must be insured.

Every employer must, for each worker employed by the employer, insure and remain insured, that is, be covered to the extent of accident insurance, against injury sustained by the worker for-

(a) the employer’s legal liability for compensation; and
(b) the employer’s legal liability for damages.

As a result, it is important that if your business employs contractors or if you are employed as a contractor yourself, then you should seek advice as to whether you have the necessary Workcover for your situation.

In the unfortunate circumstance that an employee or contractor is injured and the employer does not have the correct level of Workcover insurance this can cause a lot of unnecessary financial and administrative burden for both parties.

Each employment situation is different and the requirements for Workcover insurance of ‘workers’ may be different for various businesses and business arrangements.

If you are unsure as to what your Workcover insurance obligations are the lawyers at The Quinn Group can certainly advise you on what is legally required for you to have appropriate insurance for your ‘workers’. We can also assist you if your business has insufficient insurance and has found to be liable for an accident that involved one of your workers. For more information contact The Quinn Group on 1300 QUINNS or click here to submit an online enquiry.

Contractors’ Work

Effective July 26, 2009, the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries may issue a stop work order for any contractor without workers compensation (industrial insurance) coverage.

As an Employer, You Need to Have Workers Comp Coverage

In most states, workers compensation is mandatory. It is coverage which provides health care for an employee if they get injured while working for you.

NJ Employer Indicted for Failure to Provide Workers Compensation

Chrysler is being brought out by an Italian company because of bankruptcy and it was not clear at first whether or not the new owners were going to take on the responsibility of covering workers’ compensation coverage. 

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Insurance for Workers Compensation

 

The United States, amongst other countries has laws in place to protect employees in case they become ill or suffer work place injury. In a nutshell this program is known as workers compensation insurance.

The specific coverage and the eligibility criteria for workers compensation insurance varies from state to state. For example in some states the coverage is extended to the worker’s family in case the employee sustains a long term injury. In other states the laws could be quite different. This is why it is always advised to check out the details associated with the program according to your state.

The coverage is not the only thing that varies from state to state. Each state also outlines the range of injuries and illnesses that are to be compensated for along with the type of award. Laws framed on the federal level are only applicable to government employees and those individuals involved in interstate commerce.

In general, workers compensation insurance covers work related illnesses and all other kinds of accidents in the work place. Employees harmed while conducting business outside of the work place may also be liable to receive an award under the program. For example if an employee is injured while making a delivery for his company he will be covered by the compensation program.

It is also important to know that the workers compensation insurance is not just limited to medical expenses. Rather it also protects employees from losing all their income in seeking treatment for an illness or injury. Hence when an employee covered by the compensation program is undergoing treatment and unable to attend work he may still be paid up to 2/3 of his salary. In case the employee has been permanently disabled, this amount may be far greater.

Some states also include vocational rehabilitation under their workers compensation insurance programs. This happens when an employee suffers from a disease or injury that makes him unable to perform his previous job. In such cases he will be able to undergo vocational training for a new skill so that he can find a new job. In other cases the company may be forced to create a new opening for the disabled individual.

As beneficial as these programs are employees often have to fight lengthy cases to receive the compensation they are entitled to. This is why it is important to go through the right sources from the start. Otherwise you may end up hiring an attorney to fight your case that you will end up paying as well. It is highly advised to read up on what your rights are under this program according to your state regulations. Most will even offer you free initial consultation. In other cases attorneys don’t charge until the employee receives a settlement.

You can also take assistance form organizations that specialize in providing legal advise to employees and companies on how to find the best workers compensation and general liability insurance solutions.

Author: Daisy Wilson

Find expert guidance for Workers Compensation Insurance at http://www.shopinsuranceonline.com. The website provides news and information to companies looking to obtain the program for their business.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Daisy_Wilson

States watch Chrysler’s impact on workers’ comp

It purchases workers’ comp insurance in some states while self-insuring in others, according to various state regulator databases.  Cox filed a motion in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, which is handling the Chrysler bankruptcy, last week objecting to some of the language in Chrysler’s bankruptcy filings. He said filings show there is potential for Chrysler and a buyer of its assets to disregard the auto manufacturer’s existing workers’ comp obligations.

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