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If an employee is injured or becomes ill on the job, the costs associated with necessary medical treatment and lost wages can add up quickly. Workers’ compensation insurance protects both your business and your employees by offering benefits to injured workers while reducing the likelihood that your business will need to deal with expensive lawsuits.
In South Carolina, all employers who have four or more full-time or part-time workers are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
There are a few exception in this state. In South Carolina, it is not necessary to purchase coverage for:
Additionally, employers whose annual payroll during the previous year was less than $3,000 are exempt from the requirement to purchase coverage, regardless of the number of workers they employ.
In South Carolina, workers’ compensation policies can be purchased through a commercial provider, through the NCCI-administered assigned risk fund, or waived because they self-insure.
The most cost-effective way to obtain a policy is by comparing rates from a few of the commercial insurance companies that offer this coverage.
These companies must base their cost for coverage on the rates designated for each job classification as regulated by the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission. Because commercial providers are permitted by the state to offer policy discounts of up to 25%, comparing rates can potentially save you money.
NCCI-Administered Assigned Risk Fund
Some businesses present a high risk that most insurance companies are unwilling to underwrite. These businesses may find it difficult or impossible to obtain coverage through a commercial provider. In this case, they would need to purchase an NCCI-administered assigned risk policy through any of the various insurance carriers that offer this specialized coverage.
If your business falls in this category, a local independent agent can help you obtain guaranteed coverage through an approved assigned-risk carrier.
South Carolina businesses are given the option to self-insure. To do so, a company must demonstrate the financial strength necessary to cover the costs associated with workplace injuries, and must obtain approval from the South Carolina Self-Insurance Division.
Be aware that if your company opts to self-insure, you will need to provide an audited GAAP financial statement annually, and you will be required to pay the state a self-insurance tax of 2.5% of your total paid expenses for the program.
In this state, workers’ compensation premiums are calculated according to the types of jobs your workers do, your company’s overall annual payroll, and your company’s history of accidents and workers’ compensation claims.
In general, if you have workers who do jobs that have a high probability of resulting in serious injuries, you can expect to pay more for workers’ compensation insurance in South Carolina than companies whose workers have a low injury risk.
South Carolina uses the job classification system created by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI). This state, therefore, uses the NCCI’s statistical plan for calculating rates.
Every occupation is assigned a specific classification code by the NCCI. You would need to find the classification codes for the jobs that each of your employees does.
The South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission assigns and oversees base rates for each of these class codes according to the overall injury risks associated with each type of job.
The base rate is used as part of a formula that determines an employer’s annual workers’ compensation premium.
Example based on $50,000 in Annual Payroll
Established employers can score lower rates if they have a solid safety rating. This is known as an experience modifier-based discount.
An experience modification factor, or “experience mod,” is an additional factor that insurance companies may use when calculating your workers’ compensation costs. It increases or decreases your workers’ compensation premium for a given year, depending on your company’s safety record and claims history.
An experience modification is a numerical representation of your company’s actual losses compared with expected losses for businesses that operate in your industry (landscaping companies are compared with other landscaping companies; hotels are compared with other hotels, etc.). The mod is applied to the South Carolina workers’ compensation premium as a debit or credit.
Experience-rated premium calculation:
South Carolina employers are eligible to receive an experience modification rating when they meet one of the following requirements:
If you are looking for a great workers’ compensation insurance policy to cover your South Carolina business, an independent insurance agent can help. These agents can match you up with highly rated insurers who specialize in covering businesses in your industry.
These agents can also help you review rates and offerings from a variety of insurance providers so that you can choose the coverage that offers the best value to your company.
There are currently 315 independent insurance agents in South Carolina who are ready to help, so it should be easy to find an agent with an office near you.
Healthcare $1,825 Per $100,000 payroll
Retail Trade $2,850 Per $100,000 payroll
Construction $7,430 Per $100,000 payroll
|City||Top Industry 1 / Avg. Workers' Comp Cost||Top Industry 2 / Avg. Workers' Comp Cost|
|Columbia||Retail Trade: $2,335||Educational Services: $1,630|
|Charleston||Professional, Scientific, and Technical Svcs: $1,410||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|North Charleston||Construction: $24,100||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Mount Pleasant||Professional, Scientific, and Technical Svcs: $1,410||Manufacturing: $11,820|
|Rock Hill||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Greenville||Manufacturing: $11,820||Professional, Scientific, and Technical Svcs: $1,410|
|Summerville||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Georgetown||Manufacturing: $11,820||Construction: $24,100|
|Camden||Educational Services: $1,630||Finance and Insurance: $590|
|Hilton Head||Construction: $24,100||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|Simpsonville||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Hanahan||Construction: $24,100||Manufacturing: $11,820|
|Conway||Retail Trade: $2,335||Educational Services: $1,630|
|Orangeburg||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Clemson||Educational Services: $1630||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|North Myrtle Beach||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Bluffton||Construction: $24,100||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|Piedmont||Manufacturing: $11,820||Construction: $24,100|
|Gaffney||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Spartanburg||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Goose Creek||Manufacturing: $11,820||Public Administration: $520|
|Aiken||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Myrtle Beach||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700||Construction: $24,100|
|Anderson||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Greer||Manufacturing: $11,820||Construction: $24,100|
|Greenwood||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Mauldin||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|North Augusta||Retail Trade: $2,335||Construction: $24,100|
|Easley||Manufacturing: $11,820||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|West Columbia||Construction: $24,100||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|Beaufort||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700||Construction: $24,100|
|Fort Mill||Manufacturing: $11,820||Finance and Insurance: $590|
|Port Royal||Public Administration: $520||Retail Trade: $2,335|
|Clinton||Manufacturing: $11,820||Educational Services: $1,630|
|Newberry||Manufacturing: $11,820||Educational Services: $1,630|
|Seneca||Manufacturing: $11,820||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|Laurens||Manufacturing: $11,820||Construction: $24,100|
|Irmo||Construction: $24,100||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700|
|Surfside Beach||Accommodation and Food Svcs: $2,700||Administrative Support and Waste Mgmt: $5,890|