A few days ago, you sustained a minor injury at your place of work in Florida. You were perfectly fine within a few hours, but when you brought the issue up with your boss, she told you the company does not have workers’ compensation. Is that legal?

To help get to the bottom of the issue, Chron took an in-depth look at the matter. The next time you become injured at work, you may need extensive (and expensive) medical care.

State requirements

As long as a company has one employee, it is legally required to carry workers’ comp. For businesses that work with independent contractors and other non-employees, they should have some type of insurance protection in place in case a contractor sustains an injury.

Owner coverage

To save money, some business owners opt out of covering themselves under the company’s workers’ compensation policy. That said, with an entrepreneur who works as a one-person business, clients she or he works with may require that all independent contractors have workers’ compensation coverage before doing business with them. This is especially common in industries with a high risk of injury, such as construction.

Penalties

When businesses do not have legally required workers’ comp, they can incur financial penalties. Depending on the depth of the infraction, it is not unusual for a business to have to shut down operations. Company owners should stay current on the latest workers’ comp laws, no matter if they do not want to cover themselves or whether they are self-employed. It is a good idea for employees to check to ensure protections are in place for them in case they become injured on the job.

This information is only intended to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.