If you run a business and have employees, you’ll need to purchase Oregon workers’ compensation insurance. In fact, this type of insurance is a requirement in most states, including Oregon, with some exceptions. It helps pay your employees’ medical bills if they sustain an injury on the job. It also limits your liability for workplace accidents, is a requirement in most states, including Oregon, with some exceptions.
In Oregon, business owners can expect to pay, on average, $1.07 for every $100 of covered payroll. That means, for example, a business with a total annual payroll of $100,000 will pay approximately $1,070 per year for workers’ compensation insurance, or around $89 a month. This is only a rough estimate, since factors such as your location, the different rates for staffing types (laborers vs office workers), and your claims history can all have a significant impact on your rates.
One of the biggest factors in determining your rates for workers’ compensation insurance is your employees’ risk, or the likelihood of a workplace injury occurring at your business. To assist insurers in determining risk exposure, and to get the best rates for your business, you can use a variety of workers’ compensation class codes. This is important because it costs more to insure certain employees. For example, office employees may have lower workers’ compensation costs than those who work outside of your office and face more risks.
If an employee sustains an injury on the job or becomes ill due to workplace conditions, workers’ compensation in Oregon will help them with their medical bills. The average weekly wage of the employee determines the workers’ compensation benefits. The amount depends on the type of claim.
In general, workers’ compensation in Oregon covers:
- Accidents and injuries – If your employee needs medical attention, workers’ compensation will cover any medical expenses from a workplace injury.
- Illness – If an employee becomes sick from exposure to allergens or other hazardous materials at work, they can also receive workers’ comp benefits to help pay for treatment.
- Repetitive injury – It’s not just accidents that are covered: treatment for repetitive injuries, like carpal tunnel syndrome, are also covered by workers’ compensation.
- Ongoing care – If your employee still has medical needs as a direct result of their accident or illness, even after they return to work, they can get benefits for ongoing care. This includes additional doctor’s appointments or additional surgeries.
In addition, if their accident or illness results in permanent or temporary disability, your employee will receive weekly or lump sum payments. If they have a temporary disability, their injury prevents your employee from performing their job. But they can return to work as normal once they recover. If a doctor diagnoses them with an injury from which they will not fully recover, they have a permanent disability.
These categories fall into the following classifications:
- Temporary total disability (TTD) – These payments will be made if your employee is not able to work at all while recuperating.
- Temporary partial disability (TPD) – TPD payments will be made if your employee can still work, but only with certain limitations, such as needing to perform lighter duties or work fewer hours. If your company does not provide work that meets these requirements, the employee may still be eligible for these payments.
- Permanent total disability (PTD) – Employees who are unable to work due to an accident or illness, even after they have recovered as much as they are likely to, will be eligible for PTD payments.
- Permanent partial disability (PPD) – Employees who have permanent difficulties but can work with them will be eligible for PPD.
Oregon’s Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits
Survivors of an employee who dies as a result of a work-related injury or illness are eligible for workers’ compensation death benefits in Oregon. To be eligible for benefits, the survivor must have been wholly or partially financially dependent on the deceased worker.
The survivors listed below will generally be eligible for death benefits:
- Children up to the age of 18
- Children under the age of 26 enrolled in higher education or GED courses
- Other relatives who can prove they were financially dependent on your employee
In most cases, workers’ compensation insurance in Oregon also covers funeral and burial expenses up to $20,000. For more information, go to the Workers’ Compensation Division’s page on death benefits.
Oregon’s Workers’ Compensation Laws
Most businesses in Oregon are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance. If you have employees, you almost certainly require this type of insurance.
Employees who do not require workers’ compensation coverage in Oregon include:
- People who work in a private home providing a domestic service, such as home health aides
- Gardening, maintenance, repair, or remodeling workers hired by a homeowner
- Casual workers
- Employees with annual earnings of less than $500
These employees do not require workers’ compensation coverage under Oregon law, but you can choose to cover them anyway. Even if your employees are exempt, it’s a good idea to consider getting workers’ compensation, because coverage gaps can expose you and/or your business to liability lawsuits.
How to Buy Workers’ Compensation Insurance
If you’re looking for workers’ compensation insurance in Oregon, you should start by looking into private insurance policies. An EZ agent can assist you in comparing insurers and policies to find the best coverage for you.
If your business is considered high-risk, and you are denied workers’ compensation coverage by a private insurance company, you can apply to the Oregon Assigned Risk Plan. The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) administers this plan as a last-resort for businesses that need workers’ comp.
If your business meets certain criteria, you can also apply to self-insure your workers’ compensation claims. This means you will pay your own workers’ compensation claims out-of-pocket as they arise, rather than paying premiums and submitting claims to an insurance carrier.
To become self-insured in Oregon, you must apply to the Department of Consumer and Business Services and be certified by the director. Certain criteria must be met in order to qualify for self-insurance, including providing assurance that claims will be processed promptly and completely.
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How to Get the Most Savings
The majority of the cost of workers’ compensation comes from factors beyond your control. However, there are still ways to save. Implementing a safety program is a great way to reduce workplace injuries and claims, which will lower your premiums. So regardless of your industry, it is important to have safety and standard operating procedures in place. Employees who have safety training are less vulnerable to injuries, lowering your workers’ compensation costs.
It is also a good idea to regularly review your claims history. Evaluating your claims history on a regular basis can help you identify and correct patterns. You might discover that certain aspects of your business operations are frequently causing claims. This allows you to adjust the operation to make it safer. You can save money by keeping an eye on potentially dangerous operations.
Correctly classifying your employees is one of the most effective ways to save money. When you apply for your workers’ compensation policy, you will classify each of your employees depending on their job’s risk. And this risk classification influences the cost of your workers’ compensation. For example, you might pay less to insure an office worker than you would a manual laborer. It’s also important to correctly classify your employees because you may receive a fine if you fail to do so.
Begin a free online application today to compare workers’ compensation insurance quotes for your small business from leading U.S. insurers. EZ’s agents specialize in insurance for a wide range of small businesses. Working with our agents can save you hundreds of dollars a year on coverage.
Oregon Workers’ Compensation FAQs
Are you required to have workers’ compensation insurance in Oregon?
Workers’ compensation coverage is required in Oregon for almost every employee, whether full- or part-time. If the Oregon Workers’ Compensation Division determines that you do not have adequate coverage, you will be fined twice the amount of the premium you should have paid for insurance, with a $1,000 minimum. If noncompliance continues, you will incur additional penalties of $250 per day, without a limit. You could also face additional penalties, including jail time, in extreme cases.
How do workers’ compensation settlements work in Oregon?
The state of Oregon recognizes two kinds of workers’ comp settlements:
- Claim disposition agreement – A CDA means that your insurance company has accepted and paid a claim voluntarily. It does not disqualify the worker from receiving compensation for further medical treatment, but it does mean they cannot make further claims for:
- Loss of wages
- Permanent disability
- Vocational assistance, including job retraining
- Further payments if the condition worsens or is aggravated
- Settlement of disputed claims – If an insurer in Oregon denies a workers’ compensation claim, the employee may file an appeal with the Oregon Workers’ Compensation Division.
What is the statute of limitations in Oregon?
Oregon employees must notify their employer as soon as possible if an injury occurs. In terms of making a claim, the Oregon statute of limitations requires that a workers’ compensation claim be filed within one year of discovering the work-related injury for the majority of injuries. For your part, you must report an insurable incident to your insurer within five days.
Why Use EZ
If you’re looking for workers’ compensation insurance, come to EZ. We pride ourselves on doing everything we can to give you an easy and stress-free shopping experience. We give our customers our full attention and offer fully personalized service and fast results. As soon as you fill out our form, you will receive free quotes from one of our agents, who will understand your needs right from the start. We want to ensure that you make the best decision and get the best coverage for the best price. All of our services are completely free so check your quotes today!
If you still have questions, feel free to give us a call at 877-670-3538. You will speak with a local insurance agent who can answer all of your questions, and help you find the workers’ compensation policy that works best for your business.