Work Related Accidents Impact…
- You and your net worth
- Your time and focus
- The company you have built and its Stakeholders
- Employees and their families
- Lease Operators and their families
Risk Management is Mission Critical
- What happens if an employee sustains a work-related injury or worse?
- What happens if a lease operator sustains a work related injury or worse?
- How is your exposure as a business owner different in each scenario?
The reality of occupational accident exposure is that if Lease Operators do not have coverage, then a serious injury will result in a claim made to the Motor Carrier’s workers compensation policy. Successful or not, you can count on the claim being made.
Occupational accidents and injuries can have devastating effects on an organization without proper protection. If there’s enough money involved, personal injury lawyers will challenge the financial responsibility of all involved parties. The related legal defense costs alone can severely impact operating profits and even drive many businesses into bankruptcy. The coverage to reduce the exposure is both prudent and affordable.
What are the options?
Leave everyone exposed to a “parade of horribles.”
Agree that your lease operators are statutory employees and enroll them in your workers comp plan. This is the most expensive solution and may cause you to absorb the full onslaught of accompanying payroll taxes (perhaps even retroactively).
A Group Occupational Accident Plan for your lease operators allows you to pass through the related costs to them at a group rate, protecting them with 24/7, 48-state coverage, including survivor benefits, and defends your independent contractor agreement with them. Moreover, if you lose in a challenge by a court of law or workers comp review board, the Occupational Accident policy for the injured lease operator can be designed to convert to a ‘full blown’ workers comp policy and eliminate your company’s related contingent exposure.
Key GAIC Advantages for Lease Operators
- Coverage limit issues, i.e., Plan A, B, C, or D;
- Commencement Period
- GAIC gives 90 days to report a claim, treatment can begin when necessary
- Competing policies say treatment must begin in 90 days
- Sub-limits: e.g., most competitors have $ 1,000 max limits for chiropractic care, ambulance or air flight, physical therapy, & other rehab treatment GAIC does not impose the sub-limit Accidents must be reported within 90 days, benefits can begin immediately upon reporting or at any time thereafter, and are not subject to a 90 day commencement period…and Accident benefits include dental where most competitors do not
- When a $ 2mm CSL per occurrence aggregate for any one accident is selected, $ 1mm is set aside specifically for medical expenses, & $ 1mm for death, disability, & rehabilitation.
- GAIC assigns a Nurse Care Manager to help insured deal w/ Psycho-Social issues
- Temporary and Long-Term Disability Income benefit is based on Schedule C income and retro to day 1 (most competitors impose a 7 day grace period) and applies to the definition of “Under the course of doing business,” which includes maintenance, cleaning, & other misc activities…so coverage is not limited to just driving and loading/unloading
- The $ 1mm maximum accident medical benefit is annual, not a lifetime one
- Death benefits apply if death occurs within 2 years (instead of just 52 weeks) from the accident
Important Coverage Points for Fleets
- Major point: to keep personal injury attorneys away and adverse decisions from workers comp review boards, fleets need to offer the most broad occupational accident coverage available
- GAIC does not impose Aggregate Limits on the Group Policy as do competitors…if a fleet has 100 drivers, each with $ 2mm Aggregate Limit, then GAIC’s exposure is $200mm. A competitor will attempt to sell the same deal but put a $ 5mm or $ 10mm aggregate “stop loss” limit in
- Average length of disability with GAIC is 29 days, which is 9 to 14 days shorter than before the Nurse Care Manager benefit was introduced.
- Any expense not covered is a potential black hole liability
- GAIC’s policy limits are generally higher than competitors
- Accidental death benefit pays $ 50K more ($ 300K vs $ 250K), i.e., the $ 2000/month survivor benefit pays for 125 months instead of just 100 months
- Accidental Dismemberment pays $50K more ($ 300K vs $ 250K)
- Paralysis benefit pays $50K more ($ 300K vs $ 250K)
- Contingent Liability Feature available to the Motor Carrier as part of the Occupational Accident plan…it defends the lease agreement if a lease operator accident claimant attempts to claim employee status & collect workers comp benefits…and it defends the company in a Court of Law or in a Workers Compensation Review Board…if you lose, the contingent liability feature will pay up to statutory limits of a Workers Comp Policy
Need more information or help? Western Truck Insurance can answer all of your risk questions and help protect you and your business.