The Workers’ Disability Compensation Act (WDCA) define which employees are covered for injuries that occur in the course of employment. Although there are numerous case decisions interpreting the WDCA, the provisions below identify the employers that must carry workers’ compensation insurance:
all private employers who employ 3 or more employees at one time;
all private employers who employ less than 3 employees, when one of the employees works at least 35 hours per week for at least 13 weeks or longer;
all public employers;
all agricultural employers who employ 3 or more employees who work 35 hours per week or more for 13 consecutive weeks out of 52 and are paid wages or salaries. Agricultural workers who are paid “piecemeal” or by the amount of work they produce are not entitled to benefits under the WDCA;
Any agricultural employers of 1 or more workers for 5 weeks or more shall provide health care coverage and be subject to common law liability.
Family members performing housekeeping in the home are not covered under WDCA.
Domestic workers that work less than 35 hours per week for 13 consecutive weeks or longer are not covered under the WDCA.
REAL ESTATE BROKERS, AGENTS AND SALES PERSONS
Unless 75% of the real estate agent’s revenue is based on volume or commission (not hours worked) and there is a written agreement stating the agent is not considered an employee for tax purposes the real estate agent is not covered.
EMPLOYMENT IN A FRANCHISE
An employee of a franchisee such (a single McDonald’s restaurant) is not and employee of the franchisor (McDonalds Corporation) unless
a. The franchisor and the franchisee share in developing the essential terms of employee’s employment agreement; or
b. Franchisor and franchisee both directly control the relationship of the employee such as hiring, firing, discipline, direction, supervision
THE RESTRICTIONS DESCRIBED ABOVE DOES NOT PREVENT AND EMPLOYER FROM PROVIDING WORKERS’ COMPENSATION INSURANCE FOR HIS WORKERS WHO WOULD OTHERWISE BE UNCOVERED.
Purchase of a WC insurance policy creates the assumption that the employer is liable for work related injuries. Purchase of the voluntary policy prevents the employer from being liable for anything under the act or beyond it.
Agricultural and domestic employees may be covered under a policy that includes covered employees.
EMPLOYERS WHO REGULARLY DISCHARGE WORKERS WHO WOULD OTHERWISE BE COVERED BEFORE THE EMPLOYEES REACH THE REQUIRED NUMBER OF HOURS OR WEEKS SO THE EMPLOYER CAN AVOID HAVING TO PURCHASE WC INSURANCE TO EMPLOYEES IS A CRIME.