Springfield is the state capital of Illinois, so it is little wonder that most employment in this city centers around government. Of course, Springfield workers do all kinds of jobs in a wide range of industries. Whatever type of job they do, employees sometimes are injured while at work. When this happens, workers’ compensation insurance can cover the cost of medical treatment and wage replacement.
If you are an employer in Springfield, a local independent insurance agent can help you find the best and most affordable workers’ compensation insurance policy to cover your business. Contact an insurance agent near you to learn more.
Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance Required in Springfield, IL?
Businesses in Springfield need to be in compliance with Illinois state employment laws. In this state, all employers are required to cover their employees with workers’ compensation insurance. This is true even for employers who have only one employee who works part-time.
There are a few exceptions. It is not necessary to purchase coverage for sole proprietors, nor is it necessary to cover family members who are corporate officers, or direct family members who live in the same household as the employer. However, these exceptions do not apply to workers in hazardous jobs like construction and trucking.
If you fail to carry workers’ compensation for your employees, you can face a felony conviction that is punishable by up to three years in a jail and fines of up to $25,000. Make sure you have the coverage you need by talking to a local independent insurance agent.
How Much Does Workers’ Compensation Insurance Cost in Springfield, IL?
The cost of workers’ compensation insurance is based mainly on the types of jobs your workers do. Every job is assigned a designated classification code, and rates for each class code are regulated by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. The more likely it is that a worker will suffer a serious injury, the higher the cost for coverage will be.
Insurance providers are required to use the state’s assigned rates as guidelines when assessing costs for coverage. Factors such as experience modifiers, claims histories, worker safety records, and incentives can influence rates and make them higher or lower. The following are the average rates paid per every $100,000 in employee payroll for three of the top industries in Springfield, IL:
- Public administration: $460 a year
- Health care: $1,910 a year
- Educational services: $700 a year
A nurse at Memorial Medical Center has a much higher risk of suffering a work-related injury than an auditor for the State of Illinois. That is why average workers’ compensation rates are higher in the health care industry than in the public administration sector. More hazardous occupations like construction workers and roofers will cost even more to cover.
Of course, these are just averages. There is a wide range of jobs under each industry umbrella and costs can vary accordingly. Talk to your independent insurance agent to learn more about how much workers’ compensation insurance will cost for your particular business.
Springfield Workers’ Compensation Covers the Cost of Medical Treatment
Workers’ compensation ensures that if employees suffer work-related injuries or occupational illnesses, they will be able to receive appropriate care with no out-of-pocket costs. This insurance covers the cost of medical treatment, follow-up care, medications, and other associated costs as needed.
As an employer in Illinois, you are permitted to designate a list of authorized physicians that your workers may go to for their medical care following a work-related injury. Exceptions are made during medical emergencies, though follow-up care should be done with an authorized physician. Also, an authorized physician may refer a patient for specialized care with a doctor outside the approved list.
Your business is not required to participate in the preferred provider program. If you do not participate, your employees will be able to go to the doctor of their choosing for treatment of their work-related injuries.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance Provides Disability Coverage for Springfield Employees
If an employee needs to take off more than three consecutive work days to recuperate from a job-related injury, workers’ compensation insurance can ease their financial burden by offering disability coverage. Through this coverage, disabled employees can receive a weekly benefit of two-thirds of their average weekly wage.
Treating physicians will sometimes release injured employees to return to work, but only in a light-duty capacity. If so, employees must comply or risk losing their benefits. If a recuperating employee is earning less money than before, either because the light-duty job pays less or they are working fewer hours, workers’ compensation insurance can help to bridge the difference in income.
If a work injury leaves an employee permanently disabled or disfigured, they can receive compensation in an amount based on their previous earnings. The number of weeks the employee may collect this benefit depends on the type of injury sustained and the degree of impairment the injury caused. A fully disabled employee can receive benefits for life.
Workers' Compensation Covers Fatal Work Injuries in Springfield
Unfortunately, workplace injuries are sometimes so severe that they result in fatalities. Workers’ compensation insurance can help surviving family members manage the financial difficulties of such a loss by providing them with death benefits, also called survivor benefits.
These benefits include up to $8,000 in burial costs and a weekly payment to the employee’s spouse and dependents. The payments are in the amount of two-thirds of the deceased employee’s previously earned wages and can be distributed for 25 years or up to $500,000, whichever is greater.
What Can Cause a Workers’ Compensation Claim to Be Denied?
There are a number of reasons why workers’ compensation insurance companies may refuse to honor a claim. Claims can be denied if they believe that:
- The injured worker was not officially an employee of your company at the time of the accident.
- The injury occurred outside the workplace or while the worker was doing something other than their job.
- The injured employee was intoxicated at the time of the accident.
- The injury occurred while the employee was committing a crime.
- The injury was purposely self-inflicted.
If you feel that a workers’ compensation claim was unjustly denied, you can file an appeal through the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. The WCC will assign an arbitrator who will review the facts and initiate arbitration hearings.
Find the Best Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Springfield, IL
If you are looking for an ideal workers’ compensation insurance policy to cover your Springfield employees, an independent agent can help. These agents can match you up with an insurance provider that specializes in covering businesses like yours. Your agent can also help you compare rates so that you can be sure your premiums are competitively priced.
If you are ready to find the best workers’ compensation policy for your business, you can get started by contacting an independent insurance agent in Springfield.
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