The Small-Business Owner's Guide to Workers' Compensation Insurance

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Introduction: What Is Workers' Compensation Insurance?

Even in the most innocuous workplaces, potential dangers are everywhere. A consultant could trip over a rogue computer cord. Your firm's technical writer could develop carpal tunnel syndrome. Accidents and injuries can happen to anyone, which is why most states require employers to create a safe work environment. This includes having Workers' Compensation Insurance.

Workers' Compensation Insurance (also known as "Workman's Comp" or "Workers' Liability Insurance") provides coverage for your employees' workplace injuries and illnesses. Generally, an employee with a work illness or injury can receive Workers' Comp benefits regardless of who was responsible for the incident (e.g., the employee, the employer, a coworker, or a customer). As long as the injury is job-related (including injuries that happen while on business trips, running work errands, or attending a professional social function), your insurance benefits may be able to cover your employee's medical bills and work-injury unemployment expenses.

So that's the short explanation. Unfortunately, Workers' Comp is one of the most complex and misunderstood small business insurance policies. Small-business owners — who might be on the verge of hiring their first employees — may not understand exactly how this coverage works or what an employer's obligations are.

That's why we've created this guide. In it, you'll learn…

Keep reading to get started, or jump to our FAQ section to get the fast answers you need about Workers' Compensation Insurance.

Next: Chapter 1: Workers' Compensation Insurance: The Basics

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