Though once a manufacturing town, Alamogordo’s economy now thrives on businesses in industries like public administration, educational services, construction, and retail trade. Sometimes, the people who work at these businesses get injured on the job. When this happens, it is the duty of the employer to cover their medical costs and lost wages. Workers’ compensation insurance covers these expenses.
If you have employees in Alamogordo, an independent insurance agent can help you find the best and most affordable workers’ compensation policy to cover your specific business. Contact an insurance agent in Alamogordo to learn more and to start comparing customized quotes.
Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance Required in Alamogordo, NM?
The state of New Mexico mandates that if you have at least three employees, you must either have workers’ compensation insurance or demonstrate the means to self-insure. Most employers in this state opt to purchase coverage.
Exceptions to the rule above include:
- All employees in the construction field must be covered by workers’ compensation, regardless of the size of the business.
- If you are a sole proprietor with no employees, coverage for yourself is optional unless you work in construction.
- Employers are not required to purchase coverage for domestic servants, real estate agents, or farm and ranch laborers.
In New Mexico, failure to carry workers’ compensation can result in New Mexico law enforcement shutting your business down.
How Much Does Worker’s Compensation Insurance Cost in Alamogordo?
Rates for workers’ compensation insurance are based mainly on the kinds of jobs your employees do. Every job has a specific classification code. New Mexico is an NCCI state and the rates for each job classification are approved by the state’s Workers’ Compensation Administration (WCA). The more likely a worker is to suffer a significant injury on the job, the more it will cost to cover them.
Let’s take a look at the average rates paid per every $100,000 in employee payroll for the three top industries in Alamogordo, NM:
- Public administration: $510 a year
- Educational services: $1,120 a year
- Construction: $14,800 a year
Clearly, construction workers have a higher risk of being injured on the job than those who work in an office setting. It should therefore come as no surprise that the average cost to cover workers in the construction industry is higher than the average cost to cover employees in the public administration sector.
Of course, these are merely averages representing diverse industries. Rates for each type of job beneath each industry umbrella can vary significantly. To find out how much workers’ compensation insurance will cost for your particular business, you can consult one of the many independent insurance agents in Alamogordo.
What Does Alamogordo Workers’ Compensation 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, while also significantly reducing your company’s risk of a liability lawsuit.
You can expect your Alamogordo workers’ compensation insurance policy to pay for the following:
- Medical treatment: Workers’ compensation will cover all costs associated with necessary medical treatment and follow-up care related to injuries and occupational illnesses sustained on the job. Medications, with the exception of cannabis products, are also covered in full.
- Travel reimbursement: If an employee must travel at least 15 miles one way to receive necessary medical care, workers’ compensation can provide reimbursement for miles driven, ticket prices if travel is made via commercial carriers, hotel and lodging up to $85 if an overnight stay is necessary, and up to $30 a day for meals while traveling.
- Short-term disability benefits: Employees who need to take time off work to recuperate from a work-related injury can collect a weekly benefit of two-thirds of their average weekly pay until they are able to return to work.
- Permanent disability benefits: If a work-related injury is debilitating enough to permanently alter the type of work the injured employee can do, workers’ compensation can provide them with a weekly benefit of two-thirds of their average weekly pay for between 500 and 700 weeks, depending on the severity of the impairment. For permanent total disability, the payments continue for life.
- Survivor benefits: If an employee dies because of a work-related injury or occupational illness, workers’ compensation can cover their burial expenses up to $7,500, and will provide financial compensation equal to two-thirds of their average weekly wages to the employee’s spouse and dependents for up to 700 weeks.
With the approval of a WCA judge, employees may opt to take a lump-sum payment instead of collecting weekly compensation. You can get more information about each of these workers’ compensation insurance benefits by talking with an independent insurance agent in Alamogordo.
What If Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Is Denied?
Workers' compensation claims are sometimes denied. Insurance companies may deny a claim if they have reason to believe that:
- The injured worker was not an official employee of your company at the time of the injury.
- The injured worker was under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the injury occurred.
- The injured worker was injured while engaged in illegal activity.
- The injury was intentionally self-inflicted.
- The injured worker failed to make use of provided safety equipment.
- The injury did not actually occur while the employee was on the job.
If you believe that a workers’ compensation claim was unjustly denied, you have options. You can file an appeal with the New Mexico Workers’ Compensation Administration. The WCA will arrange a mediation meeting. The mediator will then suggest a resolution.
If you are unhappy with the suggestion, you may then file a petition for a formal hearing on the matter. A WCA judge will then hear the case, ask questions, and review evidence before making a final decision.
Find the Best Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Alamogordo, NM
Local independent insurance agents can help you find an industry-appropriate workers’ compensation policy to cover your Alamogordo business. Your agent can provide you with customized quotes from a variety of highly rated insurance companies. That way, you can be sure you are getting great coverage at a competitive price.
If you are ready to find out how easy it can be to find the right workers’ compensation policy for your business, contact an insurance agent in Alamogordo to get started.
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