Warning for Michigan employers who fail to purchase mandatory workers’ compensation insurance for their employees.
We saw an interesting article about a Florida business owner who was arrested for not having workers’ compensation insurance. He has been accused of knowingly placing his employee’s health, safety, and welfare in danger. This was his second violation in a five-year period.
Michigan also has tough workers’ compensation requirements for employers. This is to protect employees in the event of a workplace accident. Medical and wage loss benefits are supposed to be paid regardless of fault. In exchange, the employer receives protection from a civil lawsuit.
Private employers, who regularly have 3 or more employees at 1 time, are required to purchase workers’ compensation insurance. Private employers who employ less than 3 employees must also obtain workers ‘compensation insurance if at least 1 person has been regularly employed for 35 or more hours per week for 13 weeks or longer during the preceding 52 weeks.
Penalties for non-compliance include a fine of $1,000 and possible imprisonment up to 6 months. Each day’s failure can be considered a separate offense.
Businesses who do not have insurance are still required to pay workers’ compensation benefits and directors/officers of the company could be found personally liable. Failure to maintain insurance opens the door for additional damages through a civil action.
Unfortunately, we have seen little criminal enforcement in Michigan. It is time for more robust action against uninsured employers. This will send a message that gaming the system and committing insurance fraud is not worth it.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (844) 316-8033 for a free consultation today.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by abardwell.