1. Are all workers covered by the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB)?
Most employers are covered under Schedule 1 of the Workplace Safety Insurance Act (WSIA) and are required to register within 10 days of hiring their first worker and pay premiums to the WSIB.
Coverage is now mandatory in the construction industry.
It is very important to accurately describe your business when registering because an employer’s premium rates are based on the accident rate in your industry. For example, premiums can range from $0.21 to $18.31 per $100 payroll, depending on how prone to injury an industry is. As a consequence, an employer in the “Financial Services” classification unit will pay up to $185.22 in premiums for one worker whereas an employer in the “Form Work and Demolition” classification unit will pay up to $15,233.92 in premiums.
An employer can have one classification unit or multiple classification units. If an employer has business activities in separate classification units, the WSIB classifies the activities in the appropriate classification units as long as the employer maintains segregated payrolls.
2. When is an employer required to report a workplace accident to the WSIB?
An employer must report a work related accident/ illness to the WSIB if, among other things, it learns that a worker requires health care and/or:
- Is absent from regular work
- Earns less than regular pay for regular work
- Requires modified work at less than regular pay
The WSIA requires an employer to complete a form 7 within three calendar days after learning of its reporting obligation as a result of a work related injury/illness. The completed form must then be received by the WSIB within seven business days after the employer learns of its reporting obligation.
In connection with this form, the WSIB will charge a $250 penalty for late submission, providing an incomplete form, or failing to provide a copy of the form to the worker.
It is not necessary to complete this report for first-aid-only injuries handled by an in-house/worksite health care professional or trained first-aider. However, the law requires that an employer keep a record of all first aid details.
3. What happens if the worker had a pre-existing condition before a workplace accident?
Pre-existing injuries are common in bad injuries.
If a prior disability caused or contributed to the compensable accident, or the worker’s recovery time is prolonged or enhanced because of a pre-existing condition, then all or part of the compensation and health care costs may be transferred from the accident employer in Schedule 1 to the Second Injury and Enhancement Fund. Both physical and psychological disabilities are included.