Is Florida Workers’ Compensation insurance required?
Workers’ compensation insurance is required in Florida for most businesses with four or more employees.
Every business that does construction work must have workers’ comp coverage for each employee — including contractors and self-employed workers.
Florida also has requirements for agricultural work. You must provide workers’ comp If you have a business with six or more regular employees or 12 or more seasonal employees who work for more than 30 days per year.
Workers’ comp could also be required in the city where you work or for certain business licenses and certifications. For example, Florida asks for proof of workers’ comp insurance with their general contractor license requirements.
Florida workers’ compensation proof of coverage
Some clients may also ask for proof of coverage before signing a contract to work with you.
NEXT can help you obtain coverage and a certificate of insurance to satisfy a license or bid requirement.
A workers’ comp policy is optional for your business of three or less employees. But without coverage you could be held responsible for expenses if you or an employee gets hurt on the job.
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Who is exempt from Workers’ Compensation insurance in Florida?
Some business owners, officers and members of an LLC business are eligible for a workers’ comp exemption.
To be considered exempt, file an exemption application with the Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation.
It’s important to remember: If your business is involved in a workplace accident, any lost wages or medical expenses would be paid out of pocket or through medical insurance.
What’s covered by Florida Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ comp can help pay for expenses related to work-related injuries for employees and business owners.
If you or an employee is injured on the job, a Florida workers’ comp policy can help pay for:
- Emergency treatment and medical expenses
- Lost wages income benefits
- Death benefits
- Retraining if you can no longer do your job
- Permanent injury
Let’s say you own a small plumbing business. While on a job, an employee hits their head and goes to the emergency room. Workers’ compensation could help pay for emergency treatment expenses up to the policy limit.
Workers’ compensation does not cover incidents that are not job-related or situations when the injured person violates company policies, commits misconduct or uses drugs or alcohol.
Workers’ compensation owners coverage
Workers’ comp can help protect employees and business owners alike.
Add optional owners coverage to your NEXT policy to help with medical expenses not covered by personal insurance or to help cover the cost of lost income if you are injured at work.
Workers’ comp income benefits in Florida
Florida workers’ compensation income benefits include one of three options. The maximum annual amount is determined by the Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation:
- Temporary total disability means a doctor has verified that the injured person cannot work because of a work-related injury. They can receive up to two-thirds of their average weekly wage for up to 104 weeks.
- Permanent impairment disability means a doctor assesses an injury that will not improve significantly. Employees may receive up to 75% of their temporary disability rate. Benefits can be estimated by the Florida Department of Financial Services calculator.
- Cases of permanent total disability occur when the employee is permanently unable to work. Up to two-thirds of the person’s average weekly wage will be covered until they’re 75 years old.
Workers’ comp death benefits in Florida
In the unfortunate event of an employee’s death, workers’ compensation provides 66.67% of the deceased worker’s average weekly wage to dependents, up to $150,000.
Learn more about workers’ compensation coverage.
What if you don’t have Workers’ Comp in Florida?
Failing to provide workers’ comp when required under Florida law can result in a stop-work order enforced by the Division of Workers’ Compensation. Stop-work orders happen about 2,500 times a year or an average of almost seven times a day, according to data provided by the state.
Any business that receives a stop-work order has to close until it’s in compliance. In some cases, there could be a penalty of double the estimated workers’ comp insurance costs for two years.
If you’re not required to provide workers’ comp based on Florida laws, employees can still file a lawsuit to recover medical expenses or lost wages after a workplace injury.
How much does Workers’ Comp insurance cost?
Workers’ compensation costs vary across industries. Factors that influence price include:
- The number of employees and the type of work they do
- Your total payroll
- Your insurance claims history
- The locations where you do business
The best way to determine the insurance rate for your business is to get a free instant quote from NEXT and Tivly, our trusted insurance partner.
How NEXT helps Florida small business owners
NEXT works with Tivly to offer an easy way to get a free workers’ compensation insurance quote, purchase coverage and get access to your certificate of insurance.
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