Workers’ compensation insurance is an important component of any insurance policy, but it is especially important if you’re in the construction industry. It is designed to help your employees recover after a work-related injury or illness, and it is often required by law.
The question is, do you need workers’ compensation insurance, how do you buy workers’ compensation insurance, and where do you get it?
Regular Health and General Liability Insurance Aren’t Enough
If you have a health insurance policy or a general liability insurance policy, you may assume that it covers your employees adequately in the event of an illness or injury.
These policies don’t.
They are meant to be used generally by employees to maintain their health, to cover the costs of property damage, or to take care of customer accidents. Illness and accidents by employees on the job can only be covered by a workers’ compensation policy.
What to Consider Before Getting a Workers’ Compensation Policy
Before you get into the details of how you buy workers’ compensation insurance, you have to think about what you need.
Start by looking up what is required by law in the state where you will be working. For example, in California, even employers with only one employee must have coverage, while Georgia businesses aren’t required to carry this type of insurance unless there are at least three employees.
Then, you should start thinking about your needs and how much it might cost. Things that can impact cost include:
- The number of employees you have
- The types of employees you have
- The type of work your employees do
- The size of your payroll
Where You Can Get Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Once you have a good idea of what you’re looking for and you have a general sense of exactly what a workers’ compensation policy can do for your business, it’s time to look for a policy.
There are multiple ways to obtain a policy. In some states like North Dakota, Ohio, Washington, and Wyoming, coverage must be obtained through a state-funded program.
In other states, state-funded policies are available, but private insurance companies also offer policies. Many contractors prefer private companies because their prices are more competitive and there is better customer service.
However, private insurers can decline coverage. In this case, contractors can always turn to a state-funded workers’ compensation policy.
It’s best to start by obtaining quotes online. Nearly every insurance provider has quick forms you can fill out and a representative will get back to you with a custom quote. Get a few quotes from a few different insurance providers to find the best deal.
Working With an Agent Vs. a Broker
Every insurance company has agents who are standing by to provide you with a quote, but agents only work with a single insurance company. If you don’t want the hassle of hunting down different quotes from different agents who work with different companies, consider working with a broker.
Instead of working with a single insurance company and offering policies from that company alone, a broker compares policies from multiple companies for you. For example, at DJM Insurance, we work with over 50 different carriers, 12 of which are A-rated. Simply let one of our representatives know what kind of workers’ compensation you’re looking for. We’ll compare prices and provide you with a few different options that we think would be the best for you and your business.
Still have lingering questions about how you buy workers’ compensation insurance? We would be happy to help! Call us at (800) 763-0698 and we will answer any questions you have about insurance before you purchase a policy.