How Can Restaurants Lower Their Workers’ Comp Costs?

  • Published Feb 11, 2022

As a restaurant owner, you’re used to wearing many hats. There are days you may jump from being an owner to helping out with daily management tasks to even clearing tables when things get out of hand. With all that responsibility, the odds are that you’re not always focused on things like business insurance. But the truth is that having the right coverage at the right price can make all the difference.

Luckily, here at Cerity we’re experts at workers’ comp. We obsess over the details so you don’t have to. Let’s go over why it’s important to have workers’ compensation for restaurants, how much workers’ comp can cost, and how restaurants can lower their workers’ comp premiums. 

Workers’ Comp for Restaurants

First, why should you get workers’ comp for your restaurant? There are many benefits to getting workers’ comp coverage, but a key factor to consider first is legal requirements. Most states require that businesses with one or more employees provide workers’ comp. Check out our comprehensive state-by-state guide to see if your state requires coverage and what exemptions might be applicable. 

Outside of legal requirements, workers’ comp is beneficial because it protects you, your business, and your employees from the financial burdens associated with workplace injuries or illnesses. If an employee gets injured or sick on the job, not only could they be out of work, but they may also incur expenses related to emergency and ongoing medical care. In addition, your business could face legal expenses if the employee files a lawsuit in relation to their injury. Workers’ comp helps to cover many of these costs. The benefit coverage of workers’ comp includes:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Full/Partial disability
  • Death benefits
  • Court costs
  • Attorney fees

A good workers’ comp policy provides much-needed relief when you need it most, allowing your employee to focus on their recovery and you to focus on your restaurant’s success. 

Restaurant Risks

Although we’d all like to believe we can avoid injuries at our jobs, the truth is that every day your staff faces an array of risks that put them at high risk of injury or illness. In fact, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were nearly 200,000 nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses in 2017 alone. 

Common injuries in the restaurant industry include: 

  • Slips and falls due to wet floors and spills
  • Musculoskeletal injuries due to lifting heavy trays, boxes of product, heavy pots, and cases of drinks
  • Burns from hot surfaces, liquids, and food
  • Cuts from knives, kitchen tools, and broken dinnerware
  • Auto accidents during catering and delivery

When you consider the facts, workers’ comp coverage is a no-brainer.

Cost of Workers’ Comp for Restaurants

Balancing the books is no fun. So it’s natural to be curious about how big or small of an expense your business insurance will be. When it comes to restaurant workers’ comp costs, amounts may vary based on a variety of circumstances unique to your restaurant. These include: 

  • Location of your restaurant
  • How many employees work at your restaurant
  • The type of restaurant you operate (dine-in, delivery, catering, etc.)

Regardless of the cost of your premiums, however, it’s essential to have workers’ comp coverage in high-risk industries such as restaurants and hospitality. The cost of having coverage is almost always less than the costs of not having coverage.

How Restaurants Can Lower Their Workers’ Comp Costs

It’s understandable that cost is a concern, so for restaurant owners who want to better manage their finances, let’s dive into ways to help lower your workers’ comp costs. 

Another way to lower your workers’ comp costs is to practice risk mitigation strategies. Insurance providers look favorably on restaurants that take safety seriously because the industry is inherently high-risk when it comes to injuries or illnesses. Ways to do this include: 

  • Hold training programs for new and existing employees
  • Follow industry best practices for food and drink preparation safety
  • Put workplace policies in place that prioritize safety
  • Enforce protective wardrobe requirements like non-slip shoes, gloves for cutting, etc. 

By having safe business practices your business can potentially experience fewer severe workers’ comp claims and fewer claims overall, which can lead to lower premiums. The amount your premiums will be discounted largely depends on your specific restaurant.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance for Restaurants

With everything on your plate, we understand that you might not want to put too much time into determining the right workers’ comp provider for you. That’s why at Cerity we’ve committed to taking a new approach to workers’ comp. We’ve streamlined the quotes process so restaurant owners like you can get fast and accurate quotes and instant coverage. 

Using proprietary technology, we’re able to provide a quick and easy workers’ comp quote. Visit our online quote tool today to get your unique quote and start protecting your business.

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Grab your free quote today.

It only takes a few minutes, whether you’re already covered or just getting started.


The information provided is intended to provide a general overview. This information is not legal advice and should not be relied on as such. Cerity® makes no warranties for the accuracy, adequacy, or completeness of the information provided, and will not be responsible for any actions taken based on the information contained herein. If you have legal questions or need legal advice, please consult an attorney.