Is My Employer Required To Carry Workers’ Compensation Insurance?

Several workers dig a pit at a construction site while supervisors watch from above.

Employers in Minnesota are mandated to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees under Minnesota Statute §176.181, subdivision 2. The legislature wants to ensure that injured workers have access to recovery if he or she suffers an injury on the job. Employees are generally defined as a person who performs services for another for hire. Employees include minors, part-time workers and non-U.S. citizens. The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry is responsible for work comp insurance in Minnesota.

Under Minnesota Statute §176.041 in certain circumstances some types of employers are not required to carry work comp insurance. These types of employers include but are not limited to:

  • Family farm employees (if paid less than $8,000 in cash wages over the last year)
  • Independent contractors
  • Household workers
  • LLC or limited liability companies
  • Closely held corporations
  • Nonprofit associations

However, these types of employers may still elect to carry work comp insurance coverage and many do, so if you work for one do not assume they do not carry work comp insurance. You may check on the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry’s website to search whether your employer carries a policy. Employers are also required to post a Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Employee Rights and Responsibilities poster in a conspicuous location for its employees. The poster must show the employer’s insurance carrier information, including a name and phone number.

If you believe that a business does not have workers’ compensation coverage you may report that company to the Department of Labor and Industry’s Special Compensation Fund by email or by phone at 651-284-5453.

If the employer is required to carry work comp insurance and fails to do so, injured employees may still receive benefits from the Minnesota Special Compensation Fund under Minnesota Statute §176.129. The Minnesota Special Compensation Fund may then receive reimbursement from the employer for benefits paid to the injured worker plus monetary penalties. The Minnesota Special Compensation Fund also administers Supplementary Benefits, which are a complicated specific type of wage loss benefit that may affect an injured worker who was injured before 1990. The Special Compensation fund also investigates whether the employer has coverage and steps in the place of the employer, if the employer failed to maintain coverage.

Some employers are self-insured as well, and thus responsible for paying out workers’ compensation claims. Generally large public entities are self-insured, such as the State of Minnesota or the City of St. Paul. The Minnesota Commerce Department must issue its approval for an employer to be self-insured for the purposes of workers’ compensation. The employer must prove its financial capability to be self-insured.

If you have sustained an injury in the course and scope of your employment in the State of Minnesota, contact Meuser Law Office, P.A. for a free no-obligation case consultation. Don’t wait to get an attorney involved if you have a Minnesota workers’ compensation claim. The process can be complex, but the knowledgeable attorneys at Meuser Law Office, P.A. keep our clients informed of the process as well as what to expect each step of the way. We take the time with each client to help determine which benefits under the Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Act you are entitled. Call us today at 1-877-746-5680.