Workers’ Compensation Insurance Policy for Trucking Companies in Florida
The majority of companies, even those not in the construction industry, are required to have Workers’ Compensation in Florida. This includes most trucking companies.
Trucking companies typically have to get Workers’ Compensation in Florida, as most of them employ more than three workers. If your trucking company employs independent contractors, it will not need coverage for those individuals. Truck drivers often go out of state, but that does not mean they will be ineligible to get Workers’ Compensation if injured on the job in another state. The cost of insurance varies for trucking companies but can be affordable despite their possible risk factors. Ignoring Workers’ Compensation requirements can lead to detrimental stop-work orders, costly lawsuits, and expensive fines for trucking companies in Florida.
Call our Florida Workers’ Compensation insurance brokers at (866) 340-9120 and start the process of getting a policy quote for your trucking company from NPN Brokers today.
Trucking Companies and Workers’ Comp Insurance in Florida
Accidents and injuries in the trucking industry are relatively high, especially considering the added risk of vehicle crashes when traveling long distances. If you own a trucking company in Florida, it is important to understand how your business relates to the state’s complex Workers’ Compensation system. If you do not, you might unknowingly violate the Workers’ Compensation code.
Trucking companies with four or more regular employees need Workers’ Compensation in Florida. Because trucking companies are not in the construction industry, their insurance requirements are laxer. Still, most trucking companies will have upwards of four drivers, especially considering that other employees, such as administrative workers, typically make up some of a company’s workforce. If you own a trucking company, it will likely need a Workers’ Compensation policy in place at all times in Florida.
Sometimes, trucking companies can avoid Workers’ Compensation requirements by hiring drivers as independent contractors. Florida has a strict definition of an independent contractor, so it is important to ensure that your drivers meet the criteria before assuming you will not need coverage. Hiring drivers as independent contractors means your company will not be responsible for any negligent acts they perform while driving. That does not mean, however, that your trucking company will never be liable for injuries an independent contractor driver sustains in Florida.
Trucking companies typically have their drivers drive long distances, often out of state, to deliver products. This means that some truck accidents might occur in another state, not in Florida. Should this happen to one of your company’s drivers, they will still be eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits. Just because a driver is hurt while working out of state does not mean that they cannot receive benefits. If your company is based in Florida, it will have to abide by Florida’s Workers’ Compensation code.
Cost of Insurance
Trucking companies are considered at high-risk for workplace injuries due to the fact that drivers are responsible for operating large vehicles over far distances. Drivers might be tired when working long hours and fall asleep at the wheel, causing an accident. There are innumerable ways truck drivers might be injured on the job, meaning insurance carriers might be wary of providing trucking companies with coverage. This typically results in a hike in premiums, which might already be high as the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) sets the base premiums for Workers’ Compensation in Florida.
That said, our Workers’ Compensation insurance brokers have long-established affiliations with carriers that welcome high-risk companies, like those in the trucking industry. Your company can find coverage that does not require expensive contractors or deposits, making the overall cost of Workers’ Compensation easily manageable for trucking companies in Florida.
When determining cost, carriers take the NCCI’s manual premium, apply it to a trucking company’s payroll, and then consider the other risk factors a company might have. This often includes assessing the company’s history of workplace accidents and its age. More established trucking companies are likely to get lower Workers’ Compensation premiums from the get-go in Florida.
Florida’s Workers’ Compensation system is structured so that companies that have insurance are shielded from liability for a worker’s on-the-job injuries. In short, a truck driver cannot sue a trucking company for compensation if that trucking company has Workers’ Compensation in Florida. Conversely, if a trucking company does not have Workers’ Compensation, it is not protected from civil action and can be sued by an injured worker. More damages are typically available in lawsuits than in Workers’ Compensation claims, meaning getting insurance is often less costly than going without it in Florida.
If the Florida Department of Financial Services Division of Workers’ Compensation learns that your trucking company is out of compliance with Florida’s insurance requirements, it will likely impose a stop-work order. This means your company must stop operations entirely until it finds Workers’ Compensation coverage. This can be damaging to trucking companies that might have products in transit when a stop-work order is implemented. These delays can also harm your company’s relationships with clients and impact its reputation considerably. Only when a trucking company decides to comply with Florida’s statutes and get Workers’ Compensation will a stop-work order be lifted.
Failing to get Workers’ Compensation for your employees is against the law in Florida. The Division of Workers’ Compensation penalizes trucking companies that are non-compliant by way of civil penalties. The financial consequence of operating without Workers’ Compensation in Florida is twice the amount an employer should have paid in premiums for any time they were uncovered over the past two years. Employers might also face criminal consequences, as they have broken the law by not having Workers’ Compensation.
Get Workers’ Comp from Our Florida Brokers Today
To find coverage now, call the Workers’ Compensation insurance brokers at NPN Brokers at (866) 340-9120.
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