Before we delve into workers’ compensation insurance, let’s talk about the workforce. The workforce is the force that makes any business operational. It ensures that the company keeps running.
In return, employees enjoy compensations. These compensations are in the form of salary, a healthy work environment and other benefits.
In the process of keeping the business running, accidents happen. These accidents may lead to injuries or even death. If it occurs in a workplace, the law demands that the employers and employees must be responsible.
To ensure that the financial implication of this burden does not take a drastic toll on the business, most employers acquire workers’ compensation insurance.
Workers’ compensation insurance provides a fair system of adequate compensation for employees. They receive compensation for any injury, death, disease or disability, which occurs in the course of employment.
The Employer agrees to pay all compensation related to the insured with no regard to liability.
In Nigeria, Employee Compensation Act guides the worker’s compensation insurance policy. This policy applies to all private and public sectors throughout the country.
What does the Worker’s Compensation Insurance plan to cover?
Workers’ compensation coverage is dependent on the Employer’s payroll and the nature of the employee’s role. Besides, the Insurance policy covers the employee even if the person contributed to the injury. The typical benefits of this insurance plan to a work injured employee includes:
- Medical expenses for the injury sustained.
- Possible legal expenses if the employee sues the business for negligence which led to the injury.
- The beneficiary of the deceased worker will receive death benefits.
- Employees who temporarily or permanently suffer disabilities get reimbursement of wages.
- Covers new skill acquisition costs for employees may not go back to their routine work due to the injuries sustained.
How does one access the compensation when an incident occurs?
Nigeria’s Workers Compensation Act lists the requirements to access to compensation. The employee has to do the following:
- The employee must notify the Employer of the concern within 14 days of the occurrence. The information must include the name of the employee, time and place of the incident. It should also, the nature and cause of the disease or injury if known. Failure to provide the information can mean loss of claim.
- The Employer is to report this information to the NSITF Management Board within seven days of receiving the employee’s notification. The NSITF will implement the Act and the Fund.
- If the employee dies in the accident, the employer is to report this immediately. Also, the Employer is to pay the employee’s beneficiaries. Payment is on a scale ranging from 30%- 90% monthly of the employee’s remuneration.
The insurer will make sure the employee receives the benefits, as the law requires. In fact, according to the law, the Act applies to all professionals in public and private sectors in Nigeria.
The policy is fundamental. This is because it provides a covering and protects workers that have suffered from diseases and injuries from accidents in the workplace. All workers should take fully understand how the insurance policy works so they can take advantage of it.