Do I Need Workers’ Comp If I Am Self-Employed?

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Workers’ compensation insurance is mandatory for businesses to cover their employees who sustain work-related injuries and illnesses.

However, you may wonder if you will receive benefits if you’re self-employed or an individual contractor?

Do you wonder if you need workers’ comp insurance even if you don’t have employees?

These are questions that often pop into the mind of the self-employed like you. That’s why you must know more about workers’ comp insurance for self-employed people. Be sure to call the best Burbank workers’ compensation lawyer if you need clarifications as well.

Is Workers’ Comp Insurance Required for the Self-Employed in California?

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Workers’ compensation insurance is generally not required for self-employed workers in California. However, there are two exceptions to the rule:

1. You Hire at Least One Employee

You must get workers’ comp insurance if you hire one person to complete projects requiring two or more people.

For example, you’re a house painter, and you need to complete a home interior painting project in five days. Unfortunately, the house is quite large, and you can’t finish it within the deadline.

That’s when you may need to hire someone to help you complete the project on time. And if you do this, you need to get workers’ comp insurance for your employee.

2. You’re a Self-Employed Roofer

Self-employed roofers must get workers’ comp insurance to cover themselves. That’s because the roofing industry has a significantly high risk of injuries. And workers’ comp insurance can cover expenses due to work-related injuries.

Should You Get Workers’ Comp Insurance When You’re Not Required to Get One?

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Although workers’ comp insurance is optional in California, getting one carries significant benefits to a self-employed worker.

Examples include:

  1. It can cover your costs when you sustain work-related injuries and illnesses. That’s helpful to keep you afloat when you have to stop your business temporarily or permanently because of an injury.
  2. It can help your business to continue running as well. That’s because you don’t have to pay much for treatments and therapies. So, you don’t need to spend additional money from your business’ finances for such costs.
  3. Its Supplemental Job Displacement benefits help you restart your business after recovering from the injuries. With this benefit, you don’t need help you return to your job or find a new one.

That’s why self-employed workers should still consider getting workers’ comp insurance even if it’s not required.

How Self-Employed Workers Get Workers’ Comp Insurance


You must find the correct insurance carrier if you’re required to carry workers’ comp insurance. They should have the proper authorization to offer California workers’ compensation insurance for self-employed workers.

You can visit the official websites of the California Department of Insurance and State Compensation Insurance Fund to select a licensed insurer.

However, be sure that you carefully choose an insurance provider. Ask for quotes from different insurance companies first, then pick the provider offering the best deals.

How to File a Workers’ Compensation Claim when You’re Self-Employed

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Here are the vital points the self-employed should remember when filing a workers’ compensation claim:

  1. Hire a reliable Burbank workers’ compensation lawyer to guide you through the process.
  2. Get the workers’ compensation form from your general contractor or your attorney.
  3. Let your legal representative talk with the insurance adjuster to avoid low settlement offers.
  4. If the insurance carrier refuses to release your compensation, prepare to file a case in court with your lawyer.

Talk with a Workers’ Compensation Attorney in Burbank for Professional Advice

Workers’ compensation insurance can bring excellent benefits to self-employed workers like you. So, whether you’re required to carry this insurance or not, it’s still better to get one immediately. Connect with a Burbank workers’ compensation lawyer for more info about such insurance policies.

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