Idaho Workers’ Compensation

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What can be covered by Idaho Workers’ Compensation insurance?

Medical expenses

Medical expenses

Like exams, treatment and rehabilitation.
Lost wages

Lost wages

For employee recovery after a work injury.


To teach injured employees new skills if they can no longer do their jobs.
Permanent injury

Permanent injury

Benefits for employees who can no longer work due to injury.

Table of Contents

Is Idaho Workers’ Compensation insurance required?

According to the Idaho Industrial Commission, with some exceptions, employers with one or more full-time, part-time, seasonal, or occasional employee are required to obtain and maintain workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ comp is required to be in place in Idaho before the first employee is hired.

This mandate also extends to workers working from home. If you are an out-of-state employer and you have full-time, part-time, seasonal, or occasional employees working from their Idaho-based home, they are required to be covered by a workers’ compensation insurance policy endorsed for the state.

Employers in Idaho have other responsibilities related to workers’ comp insurance, including:

  • You must post a notice of insurance coverage in a conspicuous place in all of your places of business.
  • You must report any work-related injury or illness to the Idaho Industrial Commission.
  • Employers must provide a copy of each report to their workers’ comp insurer.

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“The Slip” is an amusing and informative television ad promoting the necessity of workers’ compensation insurance in Idaho.

How does Workers’ Comp work in Idaho?

Workers’ comp insurance is important for protecting employees and minimizing financial risk for your business. If an employee suffers from a work-related injury or illness, this insurance can help cover the cost of:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Rehabilitation services
  • Retraining services
  • Permanent injury
  • Survivor benefits

Workers’ compensation insurance provides benefits for employees who get injured or become ill at work. While carrying workers’ comp insurance, businesses can make sure their employees get the benefits they need without being directly liable financially.

Idaho Workers’ Compensation insurance reciprocity

Idaho permits employees to have “extraterritorial coverage and reciprocity.” This means they can temporarily work from select surrounding states without the need for a separate workers’ compensation policy.

States with reciprocity include:

  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • North Dakota
  • Oregon
  • Utah
  • Washington
  • Wyoming

Similarly, out-of-state employers may request permission for extraterritorial coverage if they wish to have their employees work in Idaho temporarily. Idaho’s extraterritorial certificates are initially issued for  six months.

Workers’ Comp income benefits in Idaho

The basic income benefit for injured or ill workers covered by workers’ comp is 67% of the employee’s average weekly wage. Employees often receive their first benefit payment within 28 days of their injury. With coverage, these payments are covered by the insurance company.

In Idaho, the employer can designate the doctor for their injured worker as long as they make that requirement known to the employee before they see their own physician. In an emergency, the employee sees the first available medical care.

In the unfortunate event of a worker’s death from a work injury, death benefits are available to spouses and dependent children.

The weekly spouse benefit is usually 45% of the lost income for up to 500 weeks. Dependent children receive an additional 5% of income per child until age 18. After that, if the child is incapable of self-support or if they’re enrolled as a full-time student, weekly benefits are payable until the child ceases to be enrolled or turns 23. These expenses are usually paid by the insurance company.

Penalties for employers who do not carry Workers’ Comp coverage

Running a business without required workers’ compensation insurance is considered a misdemeanor. Employers who violate this law may be subject to criminal penalties.

If your employee is injured and you do not have workers’ compensation insurance in effect at the time of the injury, penalties could be any or all of the following:

  • You can be personally liable for all benefits, including medical and wage loss.
  • You may also be liable for a penalty of 10% of the medical and wage loss benefits.
  • Employers can be held liable for attorney fees if an attorney represents the injured worker.
  • An additional penalty of $2.00 per day per employee or $25.00 per day, whichever amount is greater, can also be passed on to the employer.
  • And the Idaho Industrial Commission can file a lawsuit in district court to obtain an injunction prohibiting the employer from operating their business while in violation of the Workers’ Compensation Law.

Learn more about workers’ compensation coverage.

How much is Idaho Workers’ Compensation?

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.

Get a free instant quote in about 10 minutes from NEXT to see your workers’ comp insurance costs.

Who is exempt from Idaho Workers’ Compensation insurance?

Exemptions from the requirement to carry workers’ comp insurance in Idaho include:

  • Household domestic service.
  • Family members living in the employer’s household (for sole proprietors only).
  • Sole proprietors and working members of a partnership or a limited liability company (LLC), as well as some officers and directors.
  • Associate real estate brokers and real estate salespeople.
  • Volunteer ski patrollers.
  • Athletic officials for grades 7-12.
  • In some cases, pilots who operate aircraft to apply fertilizers or pesticides to agricultural crops.
  • Casual workers who work occasionally or at irregular times and which is not related to the type of business conducted by the employer.
  • Outworkers (a person to whom materials are provided at a location not under the control of the employer).

Although not all business owners are required to carry workers’ comp for themselves or their employees, the coverage can help protect your company’s finances in the event of an injury on the job.

How NEXT helps Idaho small business owners

NEXT offers an easy way to get a free workers’ compensation insurance quote, purchase coverage and instantly share a certificate of insurance in about 10 minutes.

NEXT strives to resolve every claim quickly. Learn more about our claims process and how our claims advocates will work with you after an employee injury.

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Other important small business insurance policies in Idaho

Workers’ compensation insurance provides many important protections, but you’ll need additional coverage to protect from all the risks your small business can face.
Many Idaho small businesses also consider:
General Liability
General Liability insurance

General liability insurance protects your business from common mistakes or accidents, such as customer injury or damages to someone’s property.

Commercial Auto
Commercial Auto insurance

If you or your employees drive vehicles for work, you probably need commercial auto insurance. This provides coverage for accident-related expenses in a business-owned vehicle or a personal vehicle being used for work purposes.

Commercial Property
Commercial Property insurance

Commercial property insurance can provide financial help if your business structures, goods, gear or inventory are damaged or destroyed by a covered event.

Errors & Omissions
Professional Liability insurance

Professional liability insurance, also called errors & omissions insurance, provides financial protection against claims of professional mistakes and negligence.

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* To the extent permitted by law, applicants are individually underwritten, not all applicants may qualify. Individual rates and savings vary and are subject to change. Discounts and savings are available where state laws and regulations allow, and may vary by state. Certain discounts apply to specific coverages only.
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Any starting prices or premiums represented before an actual customer quote are not guaranteed and are representations of existing premiums of active policies as of December 6, 2023. To the extent permitted by law, applicants are individually underwritten, not all applicants may qualify. Individual rates and savings vary and are subject to change. Discounts and savings are available where state laws and regulations allow, and may vary by state. Certain discounts apply to specific coverages only.