Tullahoma, TN is home to more than 2,000 businesses of varying size and scope. From pizza parlors to accounting firms, each of these businesses plays an important role in the local and state economy. Unfortunately, employees at these businesses sometime get hurt on the job. When that happens, workers’ compensation insurance can provide a financial safety net.
If you are an employer in Tullahoma, 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 Tullahoma, TN?
Businesses in Tullahoma need to be in compliance with Tennessee state employment laws. In this state, all businesses that operate in the coal mining and construction industries, and all other businesses that employ at least five people, are required to cover their employees with workers’ compensation insurance.
There are a few exceptions. In this state, it isn't necessary to purchase coverage for sole proprietors, partners, or LLC members, though you can if you want to. Whether or not you cover these workers, you will need to include them in your total employee count.
If you fail to carry workers’ compensation for your employees, you can face penalties of up to $10,000 plus fines of up to $1,000 per day until you get coverage. You also open your business up to the potential of liability lawsuits if an employee is severely injured while you lack coverage. Talk to a local insurance agent to ensure that you meet all state regulations when it comes to workers’ comp coverage.
How Much Does Workers’ Compensation Insurance Cost in Tullahoma, TN?
The amount you will be expected to pay for workers’ compensation insurance is based mainly on the types of jobs your employees do. Every job is assigned a designated classification code, and rates for each class code are assigned according to the job’s injury risk. These rates are regulated by the Workers’ Compensation Division of Tennessee and the Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
Insurance providers are required to use the state’s assigned rates as guidelines when assessing costs for coverage. Insurance companies may stay competitive by offering discounts of up to 25% based on factors such as experience modifiers, claims histories, worker safety records, and incentives. That is why shopping around for rates can be so beneficial.
The following are the average rates paid per every $100,000 in employee payroll for three of the top industries in Tullahoma, TN:
- Health care: $1,420 a year
- Educational services: $280 a year
- Professional, scientific, and technical services: $190 a year
A nurse at Tennova Healthcare is far more likely to be injured on the job than a computer programmer, and workers’ compensation rates reflect this. For those who do much more hazardous jobs, such as roofers and construction workers, rates are much higher.
Of course, these are just averages. There is a wide range of jobs under each industry umbrella, so costs can vary from one business to another. Talk to an independent insurance agent in Tullahoma to find out how much workers’ compensation insurance will cost for your particular business.
Tullahoma Workers’ Compensation Covers the Cost of Medical Treatment
Workers’ compensation insurance ensures that if employees suffer work-related injuries or occupational illnesses, they will be able to receive appropriate medical care without facing any out-of-pocket costs. This insurance covers the cost of treatment, follow-up visits, medications, physical therapy, and other associated costs as needed, as long as it is received or approved by an authorized physician.
Employees can also be reimbursed for the cost of driving to and from medical appointments if they must travel more than 15 miles one way for their care.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance Provides Disability Coverage for Tullahoma Employees
If an employee needs to take more than seven consecutive days off due to 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 as follows:
- Temporary total disability (TTD): If an employee is unable to work at all while they are recuperating, they will be able to collect a weekly benefit of two-thirds of their average weekly pay until their attending physician releases them to return to work.
- Temporary partial disability (TPD): If an employee is approved to return to work but only with light duty work or reduced hours, TPD coverage can help bridge the gap between what they previously earned and what they are making while working under restrictions by covering two-thirds of the difference.
- Permanent partial disability (PPD): If a worker is permanently disabled but is still able to work in some capacity, they can receive compensation of up to two-thirds of their average weekly pay for a number of weeks that is determined according to the nature of their injury.
- Permanent total disability (PTD): If a work-related injury is so severe that the injured worker is unable to do any job, workers’ compensation insurance can provide them with a weekly benefit of two-thirds of their average wage until they hit retirement age.
Talk to an independent insurance agent in Tullahoma to learn more about disability benefits offered by workers’ compensation in Tennessee.
Workers' Compensation Covers Fatal Work Injuries in Tullahoma
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 $10,000 in burial costs, as well as benefits paid to family members as follows:
- If the deceased employee left behind a spouse but no children, the spouse can receive payments equal to one-half of the employee’s average weekly wage.
- If the deceased employee left behind a spouse and dependent children, the family can receive two-thirds of the employee’s average weekly wage.
- If the deceased employee left behind no spouse or children, a lump sum of $20,000 will go to the employee’s estate.
Talk to a local independent insurance agent to learn more about workers’ compensation death benefits in Tullahoma.
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 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 injured employee failed to use provided safety equipment or follow established safety protocols.
- The injured worker was not officially an employee of your company at the time of the accident.
- The injury occurred while the employee was committing a crime.
- The injury was purposely self-inflicted.
If you believe that your workers’ compensation claim was unjustly denied, you can file an appeal with the state Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board. This board is made up of three independent judges who are appointed by the governor. This board will hear your case and issue a decision.
Find the Best Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Tullahoma, TN
If you are looking for the right workers’ compensation insurance policy to cover your employees, an independent agent in Tullahoma can help. These agents can match you 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're ready to find the best workers’ compensation policy for your business, you can get started by contacting an independent insurance agent near you.
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