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Defining workers’ compensation requirements

On Behalf of | Oct 9, 2019 | Workers' Compensation

If one is injured at work in Waukegan, workers’ compensation should help to cover the costs associated with that injury. At least that is the assumption that most have. Yet should workers’ compensation benefits be a hope or an expectation? Many might fear going to their employer after having sustained an injury while on the job and being told that their companies do not offer workers’ compensation benefits (presumably because they are not required to). Knowing, then, exactly who is required to provide workers’ compensation benefits to their employees will go a long way in assuaging these concerns. 

According to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, nearly everyone who is formally hired to provide a professional service should be extended workers’ compensation benefits in the event of a workplace injury (indeed, the organization estimates that roughly 91 percent of the state’s workforce qualifies for such benefits). Many might mistakenly think that companies need to employ a certain number of people to be required to carry workers’ compensation coverage. Yet in a majority of cases, even those who employ only a single employee are likely required to provide such benefits. 

This does not mean, however, that companies must carry workers’ compensation insurance. An organization can opt not to purchase such coverage as long as it offers some form of financial compensation for workplace injuries on its own. 

Sole proprietors, business partners, company officers and members of a limited liability corporation are exempted from being covered under workers’ compensation. They can opt in to such coverage, yet typically they must pay for it on their own. However, the state’s Workers’ Compensation Act requires that any company that performs hazardous work must obtain workers’ compensation insurance for all of its staff.