Louisiana Workers’ Comp Insurance

To protect your business, you need to understand how workers

 Louisiana Workers’ Comp Insurance

To protect your business, you need to understand how workers’ comp (WC) insurance works – and when you need coverage. Below is an overview of what workers’ comp insurance covers in Louisiana, and how you can get WC insurance for your small business.

How Workers’ Compensation Insurance Works

Workers’ comp insurance is a specific type of business insurance. It covers the costs linked to work-related sickness and injury. Meaning, if an employee gets sick or injured due to a workplace incident, they can claim against the workers’ comp policy. Examples of incidents that could lead to a WC claim include:

  • Asbestos exposure
  • Burn injuries
  • Chemical exposure
  • Crush injuries
  • Slips, trips, and falls

Workers’ Comp Insurance Coverage

WC insurance covers a range of expenses including:

  • Lost wages
  • Medical expenses
  • Rehabilitation costs

It also pays out death benefits to families who lose a loved one through a workplace injury or illness. And if the employee can’t return to work, or they need to return in a different capacity, WC insurance can help cover the costs.

Workers’ comp insurance is not the same as business insurance or general liability insurance. These are entirely separate products that cover different business risks. To ensure you are fully protected, ask InsurePro what coverage you might need.

Construction worker carrying long plank through a construction site with blue sky in background

Is Workers’ Comp Insurance in Louisiana Required by Law?

The answer is often yes. The Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Law sets out when businesses must carry WC insurance. We can summarize the law as follows.

  • Any public or private employer needs to provide workers’ comp insurance in Louisiana if they have at least one employee.
  • The law does not distinguish between full and part-time workers. If you hire someone to work for you, then you need to provide WC insurance coverage.
  • Sole proprietors and independent contractors don’t need workers’ comp although they might choose to protect themselves with a policy.

You also need workers’ comp insurance to protect seasonal employees and temporary employees. You may need workers’ comp to cover uninsured subcontractors and contractors, depending on the circumstances. Check the position with your insurance carrier before hiring contractors.

Who Is Exempt from Carrying Workers’ Comp Insurance?

You do not need WC insurance in Louisiana to cover the following individuals:

  • Domestic staff working for a private homeowner
  • Performers e.g. musicians providing the services they’ve been contracted to perform
  • Real estate brokers or salesmen

If in doubt, seek legal advice before assuming that you don’t need WC insurance.

Can I Be Fined if I Don’t Have Louisiana Workers’ Comp Coverage?

Yes. In Louisiana, you face fines of up to $10,000 if you don’t provide WC insurance, depending on whether or not this is your first violation. In some cases, you may be prevented from doing business until you remedy the issue and take out sufficient workers’ comp insurance.

You could also face criminal penalties such as fines and even jail time in serious cases.

Workers’ Comp and “No Fault Claims”

Interestingly, there’s no need for an employee to prove “fault” if they want to make a WC insurance claim.

The reason? Workers’ comp is a “no-fault” system. Unlike with other types of claims, such as personal injury claims, it doesn’t normally matter who caused the injury or illness. If it’s a work-related injury or illness, meaning it happened on the job, it’s covered by workers’ comp.

There are certain (albeit limited) exceptions to the rule, though. WC insurance won’t typically cover injuries incurred when an employee is engaging in criminal activity, or if the injury is deliberate and entirely self-inflicted.

If you’re unsure whether an employee has a valid claim through workers’ compensation insurance in Louisiana, you can contact your insurance carrier for advice or talk to an attorney.

Cost of Small Business Workers’ Comp Insurance in Louisiana

For small business owners, one of the primary issues they face when insuring their business is the cost of a policy.

In the state of Louisiana, there’s no “set” cost of WC insurance. Your premiums are influenced by various factors, including: 

  • The location of your business
  • Your class code
  • Any previous insurance claims history
  • The size of your payroll

For example, if you have a large number of staff, WC insurance might cost more than if you only have one or two employees. However, if you’re working in a higher-risk industry, where injuries are common (such as construction), you could end up paying more – even if you only have a small payroll.

The InsurePro team will match you with competitive quotes to suit the needs of your business.

How to Handle a Workers’ Compensation Insurance Claim

When injured workers want to make a WC insurance claim, there are certain steps they must follow. Here’s a rundown of how a WC claim normally works.

  • First, the employee notifies their employer that they’re injured or ill due to a workplace incident.
  • The employer then has 10 days to report the injury to their insurance carrier. They can do this using a “First Report of Injury or Illness'' form (Form LWC-WC IA-1).
  • Next, the insurer notifies the Office of Workers’ Compensation Administration (OWCA).
  • There’s a decision made on whether to reject or pay out the WC claim.

How to Appeal a Claim

Not every workers’ comp claim is legitimate. If you’re unsure about an employee’s insurance claim, you can contact the Fraud Department of the Louisiana Workforce Commission.

Alternatively, your insurer can provide you with the relevant contact details and direct you toward the correct documentation to fill out.

Get Small Business Workers’ Comp Insurance in Louisiana

One of the easiest ways to get WC insurance in Louisiana is through a private insurance company. At InsurePro, we can help you buy personalized WC insurance by matching you with multiple quotes to suit your needs. Once you’ve chosen your policy, we can help you apply so that you’re insured as soon as possible.

Ready to get your free WC insurance quote? Contact InsurePro and start your policy today!