What You Should Know When Employing Household Workers
When you have a housekeeper, a gardener or a nanny assisting you within your home, you should be aware that you are considered a ‘household’ or ‘domestic’ employer. For this reason, it’s important that you understand your liability. For example, your nanny drives your kids to school, but runs a red light and is badly injured in a crash. Even though she caused the accident, she can bring a workers’ compensation claim against you to cover her medical bills and lost income. If you don’t have the right insurance in Wellesley Hills, MA, you may have to pay out more than you’d like.
Under workers’ compensation laws, you are liable for injuries to your employees, regardless of whether or not you were at fault in any way. In Massachusetts, the worker’s compensation requirements are as follows:
‘All businesses must carry workers’ compensation insurance, including owners considered employees, regardless of the number of hours worked. Employees in domestic service must be covered if they work 16 or more hours per week.’
Domestic workers can include nannies, housekeepers, and maids, but could also encompass home health nurses, gardeners, and more. The legal definition of ‘employee’ varies, so it’s always worth talking to your insurer when you’re thinking of hiring a new employee for the household. Generally, the employees will not be covered by your homeowners or umbrella liability policies.
If you currently have household staff and have not taken out appropriate workers’ compensation insurance, you could have a large gap in coverage. Failure to have this coverage can leave you personally liable for millions of dollars in medical bills for an injured employee.
Also, consider auto insurance if you are hiring domestic workers. If someone, such as a nanny, will be driving your vehicle, make sure your policy covers additional drivers. Many carriers will require a regular driver to be listed on the policy for him/her to be entitled to coverage. Do so before an accident occurs! If a domestic employee drives your children in her or her own car, you may want to require them to increase the limits on their own car insurance and ask for proof of coverage.
Finding the right insurance protection doesn’t have to be challenging. Talk to the reliable team at CAV Insurance to get started on your policies! Our experts are well-versed in finding the right coverage for unique situations. Contact us on 781-237-4107 to get started.