Although Florida is a pro-business state, there are certain requirements that a business must meet. One of those requirements is to provide workers compensation insurance under the Florida Workers’ Compensation Law. Join us this week as we explore the basics of Florida Workers’ Compensation Law.
What is the Florida Workers’ Compensation Law?
The Florida Workers’ Compensation Law is a law that requires every business in the State of Florida with four or more employees to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Businesses in the construction industry must carry insurance for every employee, even if it is less than four.
What Does Worker Compensation Cover?
Worker Compensation Insurance covers medical bills, rehabilitation expenses, and/or missed wages if an employee sustains injuries while on the job. Additionally, worker compensation insurance also covers funeral expenses. It potentially even provides financial benefits to the surviving family members if an employee dies on the job.
Can I Pass the Cost of Insurance to my Employee?
No, under Florida law, the responsibility of obtaining and paying for insurance falls on the responsibility of the employer. Failure doe the employer to provide worker’s compensation insurance can lead to penalties.
What are the Penalties?
The penalties associated with failing to provide worker’s compensation insurance are usually civil liability but may result in criminal charges. Additionally, any business failing to carry worker’s compensation insurance may be forced to shut down operations until proof of insurance per employee can be shown.
Are Any Businesses Exempt?
As stated before, Florida law requires workers compensation insurance when a business employs four or more employees. Construction business requires insurance for any and all employees. There are, however, a few exceptions.
Partnerships and Sole Proprietorships
Under Florida Workers’ Compensation Law, partnerships and sole proprietorships are exempt from having to obtain insurance. Despite the exemption, many carry the coverage to avoid liability issues.
Agricultural businesses are only required to provide worker’s compensation insurance if they employ six or more employees and/or twelve or more seasonal employees all working at least thirty days a year.
As mentioned before, all construction businesses are required to carry worker’s compensation insurance, regardless of the number of employees working. They may, however, exempt up to three corporate directors who own at least ten percent of the company.
How Do I Know If I Am In Compliance?
The best way to know if you comply with the Florida Workers’ Compensation Law is to consult a lawyer experienced in business law. Feel free to contact Dowd Law for a consultation and we will be more than happy to advise you and your business.