Workers' Compensation: Understanding Your Obligations as an Employer

Proper insurance is essential for your business because it provides financial and legal protection against potential risks. The types of covers which you will require for your company will depend on the pertinent type of business, size of company and even the industry. One of the most important forms of insurance is workers' compensation. This insurance will provide financial cover for medical bills and even lost wages for the employees if they sustain injuries or contract diseases when performing company work. Here is a brief description of your obligations with regard to workers' compensation as an employer.

Have an Insurance Cover

Workers' compensation is not an optional cover for most businesses. In simple terms, if you have employees in your company, you are required by law to have this type of policy in place. Failure to have this insurance cover where required will expose you to lawsuits from your workers in case of an injury or illness. In addition, there are legal penalties which apply for employers who refuse to purchase a compensation cover. Typically, there are different workers' compensation schemes, so discuss the potential costs and benefits with a commercial insurer.

Maintain Injuries Records

You should have clear records of all injuries that have occurred within your workplace. Basically, if your employees contract a disease or sustain an injury, you should ensure that you are notified. This will allow you to enter the injury type or a description of the condition into the official register of injuries. In addition, you must report the details of the case to your insurer. The required information includes the worker's personal information, your company details, the description of the injury, the details of the incident and the treating doctor's information. If additional information such as the diagnosis and the employee's capacity is available, it should also be included in the notification.

Establish Return-to-Work Program

You should have a formal return-to-work program detailing the critical steps that you will undertake in case of a workplace injury. This should be properly documented and designed to help your workers make a successful comeback to work. Your program should be tailored to accommodate the needs of your industry and employees. In general, a good scheme should help your worker adjust to their original tasks gradually. This will involve increasing duties to match the capacity of the individual. The plan should take the diagnosis, restrictions and rehabilitation arrangements into account.

There are additional obligations for employers with regard to workers' compensation, so consult your insurance provider for comprehensive guidance.