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Workers' Compensation for Alaska Businesses

What are the laws that govern workers’ compensation insurance in Alaska?

According to the Alaska.gov website:

The Alaska Workers’ Compensation Act requires each employer having one or more employees in Alaska to obtain workers’ compensation insurance, unless the employer has been approved as a self-insurer by the Alaska Workers’ Compensation Board.

Effective August 1, 2019, the following business owners/executives are exempt from having to insure themselves for workers’ compensation liability:

1. Sole proprietor of a sole proprietorship;
2. Partners in a partnership;
3. Members of a limited liability company with a minimum 10% ownership interest;
4. Executive officers of municipal, religious, and legally registered nonprofit corporations are not considered to be employees unless the corporation specifically elects to cover them; and
5. Executive officers of for-profit corporations with a minimum 10% ownership interest.
6. All entities listed above must still maintain workers’ compensation coverage for employees, including family members and friends.

Exceptions

There are few exceptions to those who must be covered under a workers’ compensation policy. There are no exemptions for types of businesses. All exemptions are based on type of work performed by individuals. Generally speaking, those include:

1. Part-time baby-sitters;
2. Cleaning persons (non-commercial);
3. Harvest help and similar part-time/transient help (call division to discuss specific situations);
4. Sports officials for amateur events;
5. Contract entertainers;
6. Commercial fishers as defined in AS 16.05.940;
7. Taxicab drivers under specific contractual arrangements;
8. A participant in the Alaska temporary assistance program engaged in work activities required under AS 47.27.035;
9. Professional hockey team players and coaches if those persons are covered under a health care insurance plan;
10. Qualified real estate licensee under specific contractual arrangements; and
11. Persons defined as transportation network company drivers.

Other Special Provisions Set Out in Statute

1. High school students in work-study programs are covered under the Act as employees of the state;
2. Volunteer emergency medical technicians are covered under the Act as employees of the state;
3. Special public safety officers appointed by the Commissioner of Public Safety are covered under the Act as employees of the state;
4. Members of state boards and commissions are covered under the Act as employees of the state;
5. Volunteer fire fighters are covered under the act as employees of the local fire department;
6. Individuals engaged in civil defense or in disaster relief functions in Alaska are covered under the Act as employees of the state; and
7. Individual members of the Alaska State Defense Force who have been called into active duty, per

How to Obtain Workers’ Compensation Coverage in Alaska

In Alaska, workers’ compensation insurance is provided either by the voluntary commercial market or the involuntary commercial market. Alaska does not have a state fund for workers’ compensation insurance. Employers should contact their insurance agent or broker for assistance in acquiring a workers’ compensation policy for their business. If a person is unable to obtain coverage from a commercial carrier, they may purchase insurance through Alaska’s Assigned Risk Pool, which is administered by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI). NCCI may be contacted at 800-622-4123 and found online at: https://www.ncci.com.

No Reciprocity in Alaska

Alaska does not have reciprocity agreements with any other states or countries. All employers must insure their exposure under the Act. This includes an out-of-state employer with employees working in Alaska, whether those employees are principally located in Alaska or outside this state. Under AS 23.30.025(a), an insurer issuing a policy of insurance covering benefits under the Act must be an admitted insurer in Alaska, licensed by the Alaska Division of Insurance, which administers AS 21, Alaska’s insurance code. For questions regarding insurance licensing, rates, or policies, please contact the Division of Insurance at (907) 465-2515.

Please contact the Workers’ Compensation Special Investigations Unit at 907-269-4002 should you have any additional questions about an employer’s workers’ compensation coverage requirements under the Act.

Alaska Statistics*

*2017 business stats provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics

142,448

number of Alaska residents employed by small businesses


10,482

number of Alaska workplace accidents


14,258 feet

height of the highest road in the U.S., Mt. Evans


9,600

miles of streams


26,000

average number of cars that pass through the Eisenhower Tunnel each day


Alaska Businesses We Cover with Workers' Comp Insurance

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Food & Beverage

Bars, Bistros, Cafeterias/Buffets, Candy Stores, Caterers, Coffee Shops, Doughnut Shops, Fast Casual, Fast Food, Fine Dining, Health Supplement Stores, Juice Shops, Tea Houses, Taverns and Nightclubs

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Tech Services

Data Processing, Ecommerce, Hosting, Graphic Design, Network Installation/Repair, Office Machine Installation/Repair, Programming, Strategy & Management Consulting Services, and Software/Web Development (includes SOLOpreneuers!)

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Legal Services

Athlete/Actor/Entertainer Agents, Court Reporters, Lawyers & Attorneys at Law, Notaries and Transcription

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General Retail

Bakeries, Beer/Wine/Liquor Stores, Butcher/Meat Markets, Convenience Stores/Gas Stations, Discount Stores, Fish, Seafood, Fruit & Vegetable Markets, Grocery Stores, Laundromats, Pet Stores, Pharmacies/Drug Stores, Specialty Food Stores

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Educational Services

Computer Training, Cosmetology/Barber Schools, Exam Preparation/Tutoring, Fine Art Schools, Language Schools, Libraries/Archives, Management Training, Professional Training, & Translation/Interpretation Services

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Manufacturing

Microbreweries (less than 15,000 barrels produced per year) & Wine Making (no growing or production of grapes/fruit)

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Personal Services

Barber Shops/Salons, Cemeteries/Mausoleums, Crematoriums, Funeral Homes, Interior Design, Pet Kennels/Groomers, Photography/Photofinishing, Gyms, Nail Salons, Self-Storage, Tanning Salons, Tattoo/Piercing, and Wedding/Event Planners

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Clothing Retail

Bridal Stores, Clothing Stores, Dry Cleaners, Formal Wear/Costume Rentals, Luggage & Leather Goods Stores, Shoe Retail/Repair, and Tailor Shops

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Personal Product Retail

Art Galleries/Stores, Auto Parts, Beauty/Cosmetics, Bike Stores, Bookstores, Camera/Photo Supplies, Cell Phone Retail/Repair, Computer Stores, Jewelry Stores, Musical Instruments, Sporting Goods , Tobacco/Vaping & Video Games

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Medical Professions

Blood Banks, Dental Labs, Dentists/Orthodontists, GP/Medical Specialists, Kidney Dialysis Centers, Medical Diagnostics & Testing, and Veterinarians

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Architecture & Engineering Services

Architects & Drafting, Engineering, Surveyors, & Window Treatment Stores (we do not cover construction contractors or trucking companies)

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Financial Services

Accounting, Auditors, Banks/Credit Unions, Bookkeeping, Collection Agencies, Financial Advisors/Trust Companies, Mortgage & Loan Brokers, Payroll Services, Tax Preparation, Title & Title Insurance

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Scientific Services

Scientific Research & Development/Consulting, Technical Consulting, & Environmental Consulting

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Office, Home, & Garden

Hearing Aid Stores, Hobby/Craft/Art Stores, Gift/Novelty Stores, Florists, Floor Covering Stores, Mailing/Packaging Stores, Models/Toy/Games, Office Supplies, Optical Stores, Paint/Wallpaper Stores, Perfume Stores, Plumbing & Taxidermists

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Therapeutic Services

Acupuncture, Chiropractors, Mental Health Practitioners, and Physical & Occupational Therapy

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Explore commonly asked questions about business type, industry and state.

To put it simply, your business is covered. Just like that. In most cases, all of your employees are covered by workers' compensation insurance, including subcontractors (given they provide you a Certificate of Insurance). However, a Certificate of Insurance (COI) isn't a guarantee of coverage (policy may have cancelled since issuance). You should request periodic COIs throughout the contract.
Workers' compensation insurance provides all state required benefits, including reasonable and necessary medical treatment and wage replacement, for employees injured in the course and scope of employment.
In most states, it’s required for small business owners to obtain workers’ compensation coverage. In the event that an employee is injured in the course and scope of your employment, workers' compensation insurance protects you from costly lawsuits and provides state required compensation for the employee, including lost wages and medical expenses.
The estimated premium is based on estimated payroll (at the beginning of the policy). The final premium is based on actual payroll (at the end of the policy) for the policy period (usually 12 months). In the event your payroll changes, we'll work with you on adjusting your policy.
Yes, the workers' compensation policy covers all of your employees. Significant changes to your payroll should be reported to Cerity. This will help mitigate having a large additional premium due at the end of your policy period.
Cerity is a data-services company that is a licensed insurance producer that provides comprehensive workers' compensation insurance for American businesses. In less than five minutes, a small business owner can have a quote and can be protected as soon as the next day. In other words, your business is covered. Just like that. We are backed by Employers Holdings, Inc., a workers' comp industry veteran of over 100 years, EHI is reimagining how to purchase workers compensation insurance.
You do not need any documents to apply - we told you it was simple! All you need to obtain a quote is tell us a few quick things about your business and we should be able to get you a quote.