If you employ workers in Lowell, you are responsible for providing them with a safe and healthy environment in which to do their jobs. Unfortunately, accidents can happen at any time, any place, and to anyone. If an employee is injured or becomes ill on the job, your business is responsible for covering their medical treatment and financial losses. Workers’ compensation insurance has you covered. Local independent insurance agents can shop around to help you find the best and most affordable workers’ compensation policy to cover your business. Contact an insurance agent in or near Lowell, MA to get started.
Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance Required in Lowell, MA?
All employers in Lowell must be compliant with Massachusetts employment laws. This state mandates that all employers with at least one full- or part-time employee must carry workers’ compensation insurance. There are a few exceptions. It isn't necessary to purchase coverage for:
- Sole proprietors, LLC members, or partners, though you may if you want to
- Domestic workers in a private residence if they work fewer than 16 hours a week
- Salespeople who work on commission (including real-estate agents)
- Workers who engage in interstate or international commerce
If you are unsure about whether you need to purchase coverage, your local independent insurance agent can provide you with guidance.
How Much Does Workers' Comp Insurance Cost in Lowell?
Employers in Massachusetts pay among the lowest workers’ compensation rates in the country. Your company’s cost will be calculated according to the types of jobs your employees do and your payroll amount. Every job is assigned a classification code, and rates for each of these class codes are set by the Massachusetts Workers' Compensation Rating and Inspection Bureau.
Insurance companies use these base rates when calculating costs, but can offer discounts and incentives at their discretion. It's therefore in your best interest to compare a few quotes before choosing a policy. To get a general idea of how much a policy will cost, let’s take a look at the average rates paid per every $100,000 in employee payroll for three of the top industries in Lowell, MA:
- Manufacturing: $3,090 a year
- Retail Trade: $800 a year
- Accommodation & Food Services: $1,700 a year
These are average rates based on large industry segments, so individual costs can vary. Within the manufacturing industry, there can be significant differences in coverage costs depending on what products your company produces. This is because some manufacturing jobs are more dangerous than others. For help getting actual, customized quotes for your particular business, contact a local independent insurance agent.
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What Does Lowell Workers’ Comp Insurance Cover?
Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to cover the costs associated with on-the-job injuries and occupational illnesses. This shields your employees from facing large financial losses as a result of these injuries, and also significantly reduces your company’s risk of facing a liability lawsuit. You can expect your policy to cover the following:
- Medical treatment: Workers’ comp will cover all costs associated with medical treatment, prescription medications, and necessary follow-up care for work-related illnesses and injuries. Your business may assign approved physicians for the initial assessment, but then care can be assumed by a doctor of your employee’s choosing.
- Mileage reimbursement: In Massachusetts, injured workers can request reimbursement for miles driven to and from medical appointments.
- Short-term disability: If an employee needs more than seven consecutive days to recuperate from a work-related injury, they will be able to collect a weekly benefit of 60% of their average weekly pay until they can return to work.
- Permanent disability: If a work-related injury is so severe that the injured worker will be unable to ever return to work, they will be able to collect a weekly benefit of 66% of their average weekly pay for as long as they are deemed disabled.
- Partial disability: If an employee is cleared by their doctor to return to work but with limitations, restrictions, and/or light-duty designations, workers' comp insurance can ensure that they are receiving at least 75% of their previous earnings despite doing a lower-paying job.
- Scarring and disfigurement: In addition to the benefits above, if an employee suffers scarring of the hands, face, or neck or other bodily disfigurement, they can be awarded a one-time payment of up to $15,000 depending on the severity of the injury.
- Vocational rehabilitation: If a worker’s injury is severe enough that they will never able to return to their previous job but are still able-bodied enough to work, workers' compensation can help cover the costs associated with training and placement services as they seek new employment.
- Survivor benefits: If a work-related injury or illness proves fatal, workers’ comp can help pay for funeral and burial expenses and will provided the surviving spouse with 50% of the worker’s previous wages. If the employee’s spouse remarries, this benefit will stop, but dependent children can collect $60 a week until they reach the age of majority.
You can learn more about each of these benefits by talking to a local independent agent.
Find the Best Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Lowell
If you're looking for an industry-appropriate workers’ compensation policy to cover your Lowell business, an independent insurance 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 from competing insurers so that you can be sure you are getting your coverage at a great price.
Discover how easy it can be to find the right workers’ compensation policy for your business. Contact an insurance agent in or near Lowell, MA to start comparing customized quotes.
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