Hawaii Workers’ Compensation

hawaii worker's compensation text overlaying image of maui coastline If you run a business and have employees, you’ll need to purchase Hawaii workers’ compensation insurance. In fact, this type of insurance, is a requirement in most states, including Hawaii, with some exceptions. It helps pay your employees’ medical bills if they sustain and injury on the job and limits your liability for workplace accidents.

Workers’ compensation insurance in Hawaii costs around $1.62 per $100 of payroll. That means, for example, a company with an annual payroll of $100,000 will pay around $1,620 for workers’ compensation insurance for the year. Or around $135 a month. These rates vary greatly depending on a variety of factors.

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The likelihood of an on-the-job injury determines the workers’ compensation rates. Employees who carry out more labor-intensive duties and are more likely to be injured. The higher risk means they may have higher workers’ compensation costs. So it’s important to correctly classify your employees when applying for coverage.


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What’s Covered

If an employee sustains an injury on the job or becomes ill due to workplace conditions, workers’ compensation in Hawaii 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’ comp in Hawaii covers the following:

  • 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 ill from allergens or other hazardous materials at work, they will be eligible for workers’ comp benefits.
  • Repetitive injury – Not all claims are the result of accidents: if your employee has a recurring condition due to their job, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, they can make a workers’ compensation claim.
  • Ongoing care – If your employee requires ongoing medical care as a result of their accident or illness, even after they return to work, they can receive workers’ comp benefits. Ongoing care includes any additional doctor’s appointments or 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 are further broken down into the following classifications:

  1. Temporary total disability (TTD) – These payments will be made if your employee is not able to work at all while recuperating.
  2. 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.
  3. Permanent total disability (PTD) – Employees who are unable to work due to an accident or illness, even after they make a full recovery as much as they are likely to, will be eligible for PTD payments.
  4. Permanent partial disability (PPD) – Employees who have permanent impairments, but can work with these impairments, will be eligible for PPD.


Hawaii’s Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits

If an employee passes away as a result of a work injury or illness, the employee’s surviving dependents qualify for death benefits. Any family member who was financially dependent on the decedent is eligible for cash payments in Hawaii. This includes the following:

  • A spouse who was living with the deceased employee at the time of the injury 
  • Unmarried children under the age of 18 
  • Unmarried children under the age of 22 who are full-time students 
  • Unmarried children of any age who are not financially self-sufficient

The amount awarded in Hawaii is determined by which family members apply for benefits. But total family benefits paid cannot exceed two-thirds of the injured worker’s average weekly wage. Workers’ compensation in Hawaii also includes funds for funeral expenses.

In Hawaii, death benefits end when the deceased employee’s spouse dies or remarries. If the spouse decides to remarry, they will be eligible for a lump sum payment equal to two years of workers’ compensation benefits. 


Hawaii’s Workers’ Compensation Laws

Workers’ compensation insurance is required in Hawaii for all businesses with employees. This is true for all types of employees, whether they are full-time, part-time, permanent, or temporary.

But there are several exceptions to Hawaii’s workers’ compensation requirements. Certain business owners and executives are exempt from carrying insurance, including:

  • Independent contractors and self-employed
  • Business partners
  • Any corporate executive who owns at least half of the company
  • Members of limited liability companies (LLCs), if they are individuals (rather than business entities) and stand to receive at least 50% of the LLC’s value if the company is liquidated or sold.

Even if you don’t have to, you should consider carrying workers’ compensation insurance. Personal health insurance plans typically do not fully cover work-related injuries, and they do not include any coverage for lost wages, so it’s usually a wise decision.


How to Buy Workers’ Compensation Insurance

If you’re looking for workers’ compensation insurance in Hawaii, your first option is to go through a private insurance company. If you choose to go this route, you should compare quotes with the help of a licensed EZ insurance agent. EZ offers a simple online application that enables you to compare quotes from top insurance carriers and purchase a policy hassle-free.

If you are unable to qualify for private insurance, you can purchase it from the Hawaii Employers’ Mutual Insurance Company (HEMIC), the state’s last-resort workers’ compensation insurer.

If eligible, you can also choose to self-insure your workers’ compensation claims. This means you will pay your own workers’ compensation claims out-of-pocket as they arise, instead of paying monthly premiums and submitting claims to an insurance carrier. You will need to apply to do this and meet certain requirements.

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How to Get the Most Savings

Even though factors out of your control account for the majority of workers’ compensation costs. There are still ways to save. A safety program is an excellent way to avoid workplace injuries and claims. It is important to have safety procedures in place, no matter your industry. This is because employees who have safety training are less likely to be injured. Resulting in lower workers’ compensation costs for your business.

It is also a good idea to regularly review your claims history. Analyzing your claim history can help you identify and correct patterns. Certain aspects of your operating procedures may be a source of claims. You can save money by keeping a close eye on potentially hazardous operations.

Properly classifying your employees is one of the most effective ways to save money. When you apply for workers’ comp insurance, you will classify each employee by their function, such as desk worker or laborer. These classifications impact the cost of workers’ compensation, so make sure your employees are classified correctly. Not only that, but if you fail to properly classify your employees, you could face fines.

Small business owners may be able to purchase pay-as-you-go workers’ compensation in some cases. This type of workers’ compensation policy has a low upfront premium. And allows you to make payments based on actual payroll rather than estimations. This type of policy can be useful for businesses that hire seasonal workers or have a fluctuating workforce.

Last but not least, working with a licensed EZ agent can help you save hundreds of dollars per year. We specialize in insurance for small businesses of all sizes and can find the right policy for your business and your budget. So, begin a free online application today to begin comparing workers’ compensation insurance quotes for your small business from leading U.S. carriers.


Hawaii Workers’ Compensation FAQs

  • Are you required to have workers’ compensation insurance in Hawaii?

Workers’ compensation insurance is required in Hawaii for all businesses with employees. Employers who violate Hawaii workers’ compensation law face fines and penalties of up to $100 per employee per day. Companies that fail to carry workers’ compensation coverage also expose themselves to employee lawsuits for unpaid benefits.

  • How do workers’ compensation settlements work in Hawaii?

Workers who become ill or injured on the job in Hawaii frequently agree to a workers’ compensation settlement. This is a voluntary agreement between you and your employee to settle the case in exchange for a lump-sum payment. Additionally, a settlement completely and permanently resolves a workers’ compensation claim. The Disability Compensation Division (DCD) must approve all Hawaii workers’ compensation settlements.

  • What is the statute of limitations in Hawaii?

In Hawaii, there is a two-year statute of limitations from the date an injury becomes apparent, and a five-year statute of limitations from the date the accident caused the injury.


Why Use EZ

We do everything possible to make the process of purchasing workers’ compensation insurance as simple and stress-free as possible. As soon as you fill out our form, you will receive instant, free quotes from your dedicated agent, who will give you personalized service and will work to understand your needs. We want to ensure that you make the best decision possible, and that you get the best coverage at the best price. Our services are completely free so check out your quotes today!

If you still have questions, feel free to give us a call at 877-670-3538. You will connect to 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.

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About The Author:
Cassandra Love

With over a decade of helpful content experience Cassandra has dedicated her career to making sure people have access to relevant, easy to understand, and valuable information. After realizing a huge knowledge gap Cassandra spent years researching and working with health insurance companies to create accessible guides and articles to walk anyone through every aspect of the insurance process.

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