As an employer in Farmington, NM, you are expected to provide your employees with a safe and healthy work environment. Of course, even when all the proper safety protocols are in place and being followed, accidental injuries and occupational illnesses sometimes occur. Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to protect you and your employees by covering the associated costs.
Some workers’ compensation insurance companies are better-suited than others to cover businesses in certain industries. If you are an employer in this city, a local independent insurance agent can help you find the best and most affordable coverage for your business. Find an insurance agent in Farmington to learn more.
Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance Required in Farmington?
Employers in Farmington must be compliant with New Mexico state laws regarding workers’ compensation insurance. In this state, you are required to carry this insurance if you employ at least three workers. For businesses operating in the construction industry, coverage is required regardless of the number of employees you have.
There are a few exceptions. It is not necessary to purchase coverage for:
- Sole proprietors
- Executives with a financial interest in the company
- Real estate agents
- Domestic servants
- Farm and ranch laborers
Failure to meet the state’s requirements for carrying coverage can result in heavy fines. If your business continues to remain out of compliance, it can be shut down by the state.
Coverage can be purchased through a commercial provider or New Mexico’s state-administered fund, or your business can self-insure if you can demonstrate the financial ability to do so and get approval from the state. Most small businesses in New Mexico purchase coverage through a commercial provider.
How Much Does Worker’s Comp Insurance Cost in Farmington, NM?
The cost of your workers’ compensation coverage will depend mainly on the types of work your employees do. Each type of job is given a specific classification code, and rates for each class code are managed by the New Mexico Workers’ Compensation Administration (WCA) according to how likely it is that workers doing that job will suffer a significant injury.
Commercial insurers use these rates as a starting point and can raise or lower rates based on your company’s claims history and experience modification. The following are the average rates paid per every $100,000 in employee payroll for three of the top industries in Farmington, NM:
- Mining, quarrying, oil & gas extraction: $15,200 a year
- Educational services: $1,120 a year
- Health care: $2,610 a year
Mining and construction are the two deadliest industries in New Mexico. Mining jobs often require workers to use explosives and engage in heavy lifting. Also, these workers risk contracting an occupational illness due to the possibility of inhaling dangerous dust particles. That is why the cost to insure these workers is so much higher than for workers in the educational and healthcare industries.
To find out how much it will cost you to purchase workers’ compensation insurance for your employees, you can turn to a local independent agent.
Farmington Workers’ Compensation Pays for Medical Treatment
All employers are required by law to post a workers’ compensation notice at every worksite so that employees are aware of their rights and the procedures for getting compensation for injuries. If a worker is injured, they can begin the workers’ compensation claims process by reporting their injury to a supervisor.
Workers’ compensation is designed to cover all costs associated with treatment for work-related injuries and occupational illnesses. Employees should pay nothing out of pocket. This coverage includes miscellaneous expenses such as prescribed medications, devices like cases or slings when needed, and continued physical therapy.
Workers’ compensation insurance can also reimburse employees for travel expenses if they must travel more than 15 miles one way to receive their medical care and treatment. This can cover miles driven, tolls paid, and fares purchased. It can also provide your employees with up to $30 a day for meals and up to $85 a night for accommodations if an overnight trip is warranted.
Farmington Workers’ Compensation Insurance Provides Disability Coverage
Disability coverage is designed to cover a large portion of an employee’s lost wages if they must take more than seven consecutive work days off in order to recuperate. There are different types of disability:
- Total temporary disability: This is when an employee is temporarily unable to work at all while recuperating from an injury or occupational illness.
- Partial temporary disability: This is when an employee is approved only for light-duty or part-time work while recovering from an injury or occupational illness.
- Total permanent disability: This is when an employee injury is so severe that the employe is and will remain unable to work in any capacity.
- Partial permanent disability: This is when an employee is injured in such a way that they must get a job in a different line of work in order to continue to earn money.
If an employee is approved by a physician for light-duty work while recuperating, they must report for this work or risk losing their disability benefits. If the light-duty job pays less than their previously earned wages, workers’ compensation can help injured employees by covering a portion of the difference in pay.
If an injury requires an employee to take more than a week off work, workers’ compensation can pay out a weekly benefit of two-thirds of the employee’s average weekly wages. Benefits will continue until the employee has recovered or has reached their maximum recovery.
For permanent partial disability, compensation will continue for an amount of time that is determined according to the nature of the impairment. This coverage typically lasts between 500 and 700 weeks. In the case of total permanent disability, the employee can receive benefits for life.
Farmington Workers’ Compensation Covers Fatal Work Injuries
Tragically, workers sometimes suffer fatal injuries on the job. These accidental deaths are extremely hard on the employee’s loved ones. Workers’ compensation insurance seeks to ease the burden on surviving family members by providing them with financial compensation.
If a work injury or occupational illness results in death within two years, workers’ compensation can cover up to $7,500 of the employee’s burial costs. It also provides weekly benefits to the deceased employee’s spouse and dependents. Death benefits are paid out in an amount of two-thirds of the worker’s average wages for up to 700 weeks.
Learn more about workers’ compensation death benefits by talking with a local insurance agent.
Why You Should Work with an Independent Insurance Agent in Farmington, NM
If you are an employer in Farmington and you are looking for the best workers’ compensation insurance for your business, a local independent insurance agent can help. These agents can match you up with an insurance company that specializes in covering businesses like yours. Your agent can also ensure that you are getting your coverage at a competitive price by comparing customized quotes.
Discover the many benefits of working with a local, independent insurance professional. Contact an insurance agent with an office in Farmington to get started.
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