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Owning a business in crowded California is a challenging job. To safeguard your bottom line in the golden state, you’ll need more than just your remarkable commercial skills. Workers’ compensation insurance can shield you from liability while also assisting in the protection of your most valuable asset—your workforce.
One of the country’s oldest social insurance systems is workers’ compensation. During the second decade of the 20th century, it was implemented in the majority of states, including California, as a compromise between employers and employees.
According to the California state website, employees in California have a right to prompt, efficient medical care for on-the-job illnesses or injuries regardless of who is at fault and, in exchange, are typically barred from suing employers over those injuries thanks to workers’ compensation insurance.
In California, employers are obligated by law to offer workers’ compensation to their employees. Workers’ compensation insurance offers benefits that cover the following when an employee is hurt or becomes ill at work:
medical costs, including ongoing and emergency treatment. benefits for either a temporary or permanent disability should the worker’s illness or injury prevent them from working.
In the event that an employee passes away as a result of a work-related illness or accident, death benefits, including as burial expenses and help for surviving family members, may be provided.
What actions an employer should take in the event that an employee is wounded may be of interest to them. Although state rules and criteria may differ, the overall procedure is the same across the nation. Employees should inform their employer as soon as they can about the injury.
The employer is responsible for informing the employee and giving them the information they need to make a claim. Employees and employers will communicate with one another and with the insurer after the claim has been made to the insurer.
If you don’t think an employee’s claim is legitimate, check with your insurance company to see if the incident counts as a workplace injury under the terms of your workers’ compensation policy. The California Division of Workers’ Compensation can assist in resolving disputes between employees and employers if they do arise with regard to workers’ compensation claims, which rarely do. Find out more about how to file a workers’ compensation claim here.
Who Needs to Have Workers’ Compensation in California?
According to California’s workers’ compensation legislation, almost all employers—even those with only one employee—must have insurance. Part-time workers and those employed in the construction industry are also included.
There are certain outliers, such as the majority of sole owners, but these are not the norm. Even yet, having workers’ compensation can shield sole proprietors from catastrophic bills that wouldn’t otherwise be necessary.
Unless the directors and executives are the exclusive owners of corporations. The requirement for workers’ compensation coverage applies to all executive officers and directors. Directors and officers may choose to opt out of receiving workers’ compensation payments if they own 100% of the corporation.
Who Administers Workers’ Comp Insurance in California?
California’s Department of Industrial Relations is the body in charge of overseeing the state’s workers’ compensation laws. Employers can go to the agency’s workers’ compensation section for information and resources on workers’ compensation claims and laws.
What Do I Risk By Not Having Workers’ Comp Insurance?
There are numerous consequences for not having enough workers’ compensation insurance in California. It may be a criminal offense that carries heavy penalties, including possible incarceration. Penalties for violating the state’s workers’ compensation statutes include some of the following:
a stop-work order mandating that operations stop until insurance is secured. If you don’t shut down, you risk getting fined up to $10,000 or more and going to jail.
If the Uninsured Employer’s Benefit Trust Fund is required to pay the cost of benefits for your injured worker, a lien application could be made against the assets of your company.
Up to twice what your company would have spent on insurance premiums during the time you were without coverage in penalties.
If an employee is hurt on the job, your company may be held accountable for fines of up to $10,000 per employee and a maximum of $100,000 per employee.
What is Covered By Workers’ Comp Insurance in California?
No matter how little or serious an injury appears to be, it is covered by workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation insurance coverage will take care of you and your employees whether they suffer from muscle strains brought on by repeated activity in the office or heavy machinery accidents that result in paralysis or limb loss. Two categories of covered injuries are the most common:
a terrible thing. Some injuries are the result of a single incident, such as a construction worker falling from a roof or a truck driver being involved in a collision.
numerous exposures. On the other hand, some accidents happen as a result of repeated exposure to risky situations, such as an administrative assistant getting carpal tunnel syndrome or a painter getting cancer from exposure to fumes.
Psychological injuries are occasionally covered under workers’ compensation. Even if the laws are still not entirely clear on these, an employee who can show that their employment was the primary factor in their psychological impairment may have a strong case.