Especially if you own a small business, you may wonder if you need Workers Compensation insurance. Here’s the short answer: You absolutely need it and can’t afford not to have it. Regardless of how small your workplace is or how careful you and your employees are, accidents can happen at any time. If you are not insured, this can be devastating to your injured employee and to the very existence of your business. Here are five common workers comp claims and how to deal with them.
Lifting, Pulling, Pushing, or Throwing (Overexertion) Injuries. If your business is physically taxing to some employees, you can expect to see these types of claims. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, overexertion injuries are the most common reason why employees file workers compensation claims. Prevent these injuries by educating your team about proper lifting procedures and fostering a safety-first atmosphere where employees feel comfortable asking for assistance.
Slips and Falls
Icy sidewalks, spills in the lunchroom, bunched-up carpeting; there are all kinds of slip-and-fall hazards. Prevent injury by removing threats as soon as you see them. Keep cones and “caution” signs on-hand to warn of hazards until they can be addressed.
Being Struck by Objects
Another common on-the-job injury is when an employee is struck by something falling off of a shelf, cabinet, or any elevated surface. If your business stores inventory or supplies, be careful not to stack them too high. Always have ladders and step stools available so employees can reach objects in a safe manner.
Injuries Incurred Driving To or From Work
Sometimes it’s necessary to deny workers comp benefits. If your employee works at a particular location and is injured driving to or from work, that won’t typically be covered by workers comp. If, on the other hand, the employee is performing a work-related task while on the way to or from work, such as dropping off a FedEx package or stopping to pick up supplies, that may be covered.
This is another common workers comp claim that is typically denied. In order for an employee to have a valid claim, he or she must seek medical treatment for their injury, and a doctor must verify the injury exists and how severe it is. For example, if an employee calls in sick claiming he injured his back lifting heavy boxes at work the day before, he will not have a claim unless he sees a doctor- regardless of how long he stays home.
Myriad hazards exist in the workplace, and workers compensation insurance exists to protect individuals and businesses when accidents and injuries occur. Contact us at Newman Crane & Associates Insurance, (407) 859-3691 to ensure your workers comp policy is as comprehensive as it needs to be.