Can Independent Contractors Get Workers Compensation?

The Workers’ Compensation Process

What happens in a typical claim is an employee sustains an injury or disease that they believe comes from work. That can be anything from an acute event like a broken arm to an occupational illness like hearing loss. Once the employee is injured, they will generally report the incident, get a medical assessment, talk to a lawyer, gather evidence, and present their claim. This claim can either be accepted or denied by their employer.

What Makes a Contractor Different

When a business hires a contractor, they are a separate legal entity. That contractor is their own business, and thus is in charge of all of their liability. In this case, a contractor will generally not be able to obtain workers’ compensation. In most cases, they will also not get any alternative benefits either.


The possible exception to this rule is misclassification. Sometimes an employer will consider somebody that works for them to be an independent contractor, but given their job duties, this may not be the case. Some typical clues for deciding if a worker should be classified as an employee or a contractor are listed below.



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James M. Hoffmann

James M. Hoffmann

Workers Compensation Attorney $50M+ Actual case results. No Quotas. James handles your case!