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No workers’ comp needed for smallest of small businesses

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

The Court of Appeals of North Carolina has ruled that employees who seek workers’ compensation have to show that their employer was a covered employer. That means they must show that the business had three or more regular employees.

Recent case: Ernest Woodliff was a carpenter who worked for Custom Woodwork Unlimited, which did not carry workers’ compensation insurance. When Woodliff was hurt at work, he sued to receive workers’ comp benefits.

But he couldn’t show that the business employed three or more workers—only that a number of individuals came and went for short periods of time. His request for benefits was rejected. (Woodliff v. Custom Woodwork Unlimited, No. C0A09-1447, Court of Appeals of North Carolina, 2010)

Final note: Independent contractors don’t count as employees for workers’ comp purposes.

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