According to a report by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in a week, employers pay close to $1 billion as the cost for workers’ compensation and, every seven seconds, a new injury occurs in a workplace globally. This just shows why, as a startup, it is essential to protect your employees from workplace injuries. Yes, you should have what’s often known as a workers’ compensation insurance coverage to protect you and the employees.
Some small businesses assume that the cover is only necessary for occupations with high risks such as construction industries but, this is not true. A severe injury can be incurred from a simple accident like a slip on the stairway. Now, let’s expound more on how to protect your startup with workers’ compensation.
What does the workers’ compensation insurance cover?
Workers’ compensation insurance covers several areas like medical treatment as in the cost of treating injuries and diseases, loss of limbs, travel expenses when going to seek hospital services, cost of hospital stay, and cost of physiotherapy. This cover also caters for the cost of enrollment into a rehabilitation program. As per the benefits of the cover, your employee should not lose their job as a result of the injury. If they cannot go back to their original role, then as an employer you can switch their position.
The insurance also covers for lost wages in that for the period that the injured employee cannot work-they can get up to 2/3 of their salary. It also covers liability if a lawsuit is filed against your company or a co-worker by the injured employee. However, it does not cover for injuries incurred outside work, those that are self-inflicted or as a result of negligence, damages incurred while deviating the company’s policy, and for general suffering and pain. Currently, though, the cover has been expanded to cover psychological stress and injuries sustained outside work but while on work-related activities such as sports.
Benefits of the workers’ compensation insurance to the employer and the employee
The workers’ compensation insurance cover benefits both you and your employees. According to Thomas Law Offices, every business has the mandate of protecting their employees. This can be done through an insurance cover that in the long run benefits the company too.
Well, having a workers’ comp insurance cover gives your employees some sense of security. Your employees at least know that in case they get injured or sick in the line of duty, their lost wages and medical bills are catered. Moreover, if a co-worker files a lawsuit against them, they are also partially covered.
As an employer with the cover, you do not have to worry about the cost of compensating your employees because it is catered for by the insurance company. Also, you do not have to worry too much about lawsuits from employees. As per the cover, your employees are compensated, but they can only sue if the injury they incurred was caused by negligence on your part. It’s also good that where the insurance covers a limited amount, thus, as an employer, you can budget for potential damages.
The bottom line is that as an employer, you should try as much as you can to protect against workplace injuries. Remember, employees can suffer injuries. If your startup is not insured, you will be forced to incur the compensation cost. This can be a huge financial blow for most startups. So, get a workers’ compensation cover as it ensures that your startup is legally compliant with labor laws, plus you will have peace of mind knowing your employees are insured.
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