Workers' Compensation and Employers Liability, commonly referred to as Workers Comp, is often the most misunderstood insurance item for any business owner. Simply put, it provides coverage for medical expenses and a portion of lost wages for employees who are injured on the job. Sounds simple right? Well, the confusion often arises when business owners are unaware of their need to purchase Workers' Compensation for their employees.
In the state of Florida, businesses that operate in the “construction industry” must carry Workers' Compensation as soon they hire an employee. This doesn’t mean that a business owner must purchase coverage when they hire a subcontractor, only when they bring someone on to work for the business directly.
For those not in the construction industry, the line gets bumped up to four or more employees. Anything less than that, a business owner is not compelled to purchase coverage. This does not exclude the owner from responsibility to provide benefits to an injured employee in the absence of coverage, just that they would not be in violation of Florida Workers Compensation statutes. Although not having to pay Workers Comp premiums may sound appealing, if you or an employee are injured on the job, the medical bills could mean devastating financial consequences for the business.
Business owners may choose to file for an “exemption” through the Florida Department of Financial Services. This removes them from the protection afforded by Workers Compensation. This can also reduce the employee count and payroll exposure thus adjusting the coverage requirements and premiums.
Having an educated insurance agent makes navigating the stormy seas of Workers' Compensation and other lines of insurance coverage look easy. Contact a licensed commercial insurance advisor at Galt Insurance Group today to see what we can do to help your business: 239-254-0127.