As an employer in Hollywood, FL, you are expected to provide your employees with a safe and healthy work environment. However, even when all reasonable precautions have been taken, employees sometimes get injured on the job. Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to cover the associated costs.
Independent insurance agents in Hollywood can help you find the best and most affordable workers’ compensation policy to cover your business. Contact an insurance agent near you to set up an obligation-free consultation.
Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance Required in Hollywood, FL?
Many Hollywood businesses are required by state law to carry workers' compensation insurance. In Florida. the following types of businesses must carry this coverage:
- All construction businesses that employ at least one worker
- All agricultural businesses that employ either:
- Six or more regular employees
- Twelve or more seasonal employees who work at least 30 days
- All other businesses that employ four or more workers
Corporate officers, sole proprietors, and LLC members in non-construction businesses may exempt themselves from coverage if they so choose.
Subcontractors are required to cover their own employees. If they do not have coverage, the primary contractor will be responsible for paying for any injuries their workers sustain on the job. It is therefore important that if you hire subcontractors, you ensure that they carry this coverage.
Out-of-state employers are required to cover their in-state workers with a workers’ compensation policy issued by a Florida-licensed insurer.
Failure to carry this required coverage in Florida is illegal and can result in fines that are double what you would have paid for coverage for the previous two years, or $1,000, whichever is greater. Your company can also be issued a Stop-Work Order, which will remain in effect until coverage is purchased and all fines are paid.
How Much Does Workers’ Compensation Insurance Cost in Hollywood?
Rates for workers’ compensation costs are based mainly on your company’s overall payroll, the types of jobs your employees do, and how likely they are to be seriously hurt on the job. Therefore, costs can vary significantly from one business to the next.
Every occupation is assigned a specific classification code, and base rates for coverage for each of these class codes are assigned and regulated by the Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation.
Insurance companies are required to use these designated base rates when calculating your insurance costs, but they are permitted to stay competitive by offering discounts, dividends, credits, and incentives at their discretion. This makes shopping around for the best rate a great way for your business to save money.
Base rate examples
The more likely a worker is to be seriously injured on the job, the higher the cost for workers’ compensation insurance will be. Let’s take a look at the average rates paid per every $50,000 in employee payroll for three very different kinds of jobs that can be found in Hollywood, FL:
- Painting contractors: $4,160 a year
- Hotel/motel workers: $1,945 a year
- Retail store workers: $780 a year
Painting contractors often use ladders and scaffolding on the job and this increases their risk of injury. Fumes from some paints may also lead to occupational illnesses. On the other hand, cashiers and sales associates in retail stores have a much lower risk of suffering a serious injury on the job, which is why these workers cost much less to insure.
The only way to find out how much a workers’ compensation policy will cost for your business is by requesting customized quotes. A local independent insurance agent can help.
How Can Hollywood Business Owners Earn Discounts on Their Workers’ Compensation Coverage?
As a business owner in Hollywood, the best way to save money on your workers’ compensation through the following three methods.
By setting up an employee safety program
Providing your employees with safety education classes, training them on the use of provided safety equipment, and maintaining strict safety protocols at your place of business can result in a discount of up to 2% off your workers’ compensation coverage.
Insurance companies that specialize in covering businesses in your industry can provide you with guidelines you can follow in order to earn this discount.
By maintaining a drug-free workplace
Businesses that enforce a drug-free workplace through mandatory drug-testing can earn a discount of up to 5% off their workers’ compensation insurance. This can mean very large discounts for businesses in dangerous fields like roofing and construction.
Employers who apply for this discount will be responsible for paying for the drug tests, which typically cost about $30 per test. In many cases, the potential savings will far outweigh the cost of the test.
By earning a good experience modification rating
Not all businesses in Florida qualify for an experience modification rating (or “X-mod”). To qualify, your business must have spent at least $10,000 in workers’ compensation premiums over the previous two years.
Experience modification factors can raise or lower your insurance base rates according to how your company’s injury record compares to other companies that operate in the same fields. If your safety record is better than expected, your insurance base rates will be reduced accordingly.
If your company has a solid history of exemplary employee safety, you can save a significant amount of money on your workers’ compensation insurance premiums. Experience modification factors are updated annually.
What Does Hollywood Workers’ Compensation Insurance Cover?
Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to shield your business from potential liability lawsuits while protecting your workers from financial losses related to on-the-job injuries and occupational illnesses. As an employer in Hollywood, you can expect your policy to cover the following:
- Medical treatments: Workers’ compensation will pay for all necessary medical treatments related to occupational illnesses and injuries. This includes ambulance rides, hospital stays, doctor’s visits, follow-up care, medications, physical therapy. Other than emergency care for life-threatening injuries, all medical care must be handled through an authorized treating physician, as designated by the employer and insurer.
- Travel reimbursement: Workers’ compensation insurance may reimburse employees for miles driven to and from medical appointments and the pharmacy. Terms and mileage reimbursement rates are not standardized in Florida. Instead, they are determined by each individual insurance provider.
- Temporary disability: If an injured employee needs to take more than seven consecutive days to recuperate, they will qualify for temporary disability benefits. These will be provided in bi-weekly payments of two-thirds of their average pay until they are released by their treating physician to return to work. Employees are not paid for the first seven days of disability unless their recuperation takes longer than 21 days.
- Permanent partial disability: If a work-related injury leaves a worker unable to return to their former job, but able to work in another capacity, workers’ compensation insurance can provide them with temporary disability payments until they achieve maximum improvement and can then provide compensation at a rate and for a duration that is determined according to the severity and nature of the injury.
- Permanent total disability: If a work-related injury or occupational illness leaves an employee permanently unable to work in any capacity, workers’ compensation insurance can provide them with a bi-weekly benefit of two-third of their average wage until they reach the age of 75. These benefits come with an annual 3% cost of living increase until the injured worker reaches the age of 62.
- Death benefits: In the unfortunate event that a work-related injury or occupational illness is fatal, workers’ compensation can ease the financial burden on the employee’s family by covering burial expenses up to $7,500, offering education benefits to the employee’s spouse, and providing the employee’s spouse and dependents with bi-weekly compensation of up to $150,000 paid in bi-weekly payments of two-thirds the employee’s average wages.
Weekly disability benefits cannot exceed the state’s average weekly wage, as determined by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. This maximum payment amount is adjusted annually on the first of the year. As of January 1, 2021, the weekly maximum payment is $1,011.
You can learn more about workers’ compensation insurance by speaking with an independent insurance agent in Hollywood.
Where Can Hollywood Business Owners Purchase Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
Most businesses in Hollywood purchase their workers’ compensation insurance through any of the many commercial providers that are authorized to sell this coverage in the state of Florida.
High-risk businesses that are unable to get coverage through a commercial provider can purchase a policy through the state-administered fund. These policies cost a lot more than commercial policies, but the coverage is guaranteed.
Alternatively, qualified companies may either self-insure on their own or through a commercial self-insurance fund that enables members to pool resources and spread liabilities. To qualify to self-insure, you will need to apply for approval and demonstrate that your company has the financial means to do so. Very few businesses in Hollywood opt to self-insure.
Find the Best Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Hollywood, FL
When you are looking for the best workers’ compensation policy to cover your Hollywood business, look no further than a local independent agent. These agents can save you time and money by obtaining customized quotes from insurance companies that specialize in covering businesses like yours.
Discover how easy it can be to find a competitively priced workers’ compensation policy for your business. Find an independent insurance agent near you to get started.
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