Running a business in Nevada is an exciting proposition. You can be your own boss, make some money, and live in one of the most exciting cities in the world. However, owning a business takes a lot of work, and you always have to be concerned with your costs and your responsibilities. One of those responsibilities includes protecting your assets.
Your most valuable assets, even more than your property and your inventory, are your people. Without your staff, your business is doomed to fail. You need to provide them with a quality work-environment, and help them out if they get injured or ill while working to help grow your business. That’s where workers compensation coverage comes into play. If you’ve never had to worry about staffing before, here is a guide to what you need to know about workers’ comp in Nevada.
What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is to provide help to workers who have been injured or gotten ill because of their work. Workers’ comp for Nevada based businesses is required by state law, so you do not have a choice to have some sort of protection in place. There are several types of compensation available. For example, a worker can get help with a permanent disability that includes benefits for medical bills and lost income. There are also benefits for those who have temperate issues returning to work, or they are not able to return to their old position.
Workers’ compensation doesn’t just protect employees. It also protects employers. Without it, they would be liable to pay for medical bills, lost wages, rehabilitation, and any other associated costs during the entire time the employee is unable to work.
Businesses Are Required to Have Workers’ Compensation Insurance
By Nevada law, any business with at least one employee is required to have workers’ compensation coverage. Under this law, a business is defined as any entity that hires employees, including if those employees are volunteers. This applies to every business, big or small.
That said, there are some employment positions that are not required to be covered by workers’ compensation. A corporate officer for any business is legally able to decline coverage. If you are a sole proprietor then you can decline coverage as well. It should be noted that even if you have someone receiving pay from you who is exempt, you may still be required to pay for their claim. If you don’t have workers’ compensation for them, then you will have to pay out of your business assets. The costs for this can rise very quickly and soon become untenable.
Nevada Workers’ Compensation Rates
Luckily for Nevada businesses, workers’ compensation has become very affordable in recent years. In fact, it is one of the most affordable states in the country for workers’ compensation costs. This is because there is so much competition, which has led to providers lowering their rates to keep ahead of each other. The rate you pay will depend on the types of jobs you have in your business, and how much risk each one carries. A construction worker will cost more for workers’ compensation coverage than someone who works behind their desk, for example. The rate can vary wildly from as low as $0.80 to as much as $8.00 for every $100 you pay out in wages.
Workers’ Compensation Payroll Cap
One of the most important details to understand about workers’ compensation in Nevada is the payroll tax. There are many businesses in the state who are paying much more than they need to because they are unaware of the cap. As an employer, you only need to pay workers’ compensation rates for an employee up to $36,000 of their salary. Nevada will cover the rest. Therefore, if you are paying for more than $36,000, you can lower your workers’ comp costs right away. Some providers will make you request the cap to be considered, so ask your broker or provider.
Who is Classified as an Employee For Workers’ Comp Purposes?
It can be confusing in some situations to determine if someone who is working for you is considered an employee for workers’ comp purposes. Essentially, anyone who you have hired, including minors, undocumented workers, and directors, must have workers’ comp coverage. However, independent contractors are not considered employees, and you are therefore not required to have coverage for them. In many cases, an independent contractor will purchase workers’ compensation insurance for themselves.
Types of Injuries That Are Covered
Workers compensation in Nevada only applies to injuries suffered while working. If an employee gets in a car accident or slips and falls while walking the dog, they are not covered. They are also not covered for injuries that happen on a break, or on the premises before they clock in to work. Any type of injury is covered, from falling off of equipment or the negligence of another worker. In Nevada there is no fault for workers’ comp, so even if an employee broke safety protocols, they will have coverage. Repetitive stress injuries, arthritis, and other joint and muscle issues are also covered in Nevada.
It can also apply to illnesses, but only if there is proof that an illness was a result of working. It could be from asbestos on a job site, or coming into contact with hazardous materials. The only time an injury while working might not be covered is if the employee came to work under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Your employees are very much responsible for the success of your business. Without good workers, you will not be able to grow and find the success you want. It’s important that you protect them as best you can. This includes having a solid safety regime at your business, but also make sure they have help if they get hurt or sick. Having workers’ compensation in Nevada will help to protect them against the devastating costs of getting injured, and protect your business too.