Cover your South Dakota business in a few clicks.

Simple process. Affordable price. 115+ industries & growing.

Workers' Compensation for South Dakota Businesses

Who is covered by the South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Law?

According to the South Dakota Department of Labor & Regulation:

The South Dakota Worker’s Compensation Law covers all employers with only limited exceptions:

  • Domestic servants (unless working for an employer more than 20 hours in any calendar week and for more than six weeks in any 13-week period)
  • Farm or agricultural labor
  • One whose employment is not in the usual course of trade, business, occupation or profession of the employer (independent contractors, including real estate agents and owner-operators of trucks certified as independent contractors by the Department of Labor and Regulation)
  • Certain elected officials of the state or any subdivision of government
  • Workfare participants

Are their financial incentives for safe work site in South Dakota?

According to the South Dakota Department of Labor & Regulation:

You could save money on your insurance by participating in one of several plans. Each of these plans rewards you for maintaining a safe work site and making few or no claims for work-related injuries.

Merit Rating Plan – This plan is designed for small employers who are not currently experience rated or pay a premium less than $3,750 per year. It provides you with insurance premium discounts up to 10 percent based on your immediate past three years claims experience. This plan is applicable to both voluntary and assigned risk policies.

Experience Rated Plan – This plan is designed for larger employers who pay more than $3,750 per year in premiums. This plan is specific to your individual experience. Premiums may be credited or debited based on past claims and the cost of those claims. It is also applicable to both voluntary and assigned risk policies.

Scheduled Rating Plan – This plan is designed for experience-rated employers insured in the voluntary insurance market. It provides for premium discounts of up to 24 percent based on your willingness to participate in a safety plan prescribed by your insurance company. Insurers are not required to offer this plan, so you may need to shop around to find a company that does. There are more than 200 insurance companies providing coverage in the voluntary insurance market in South Dakota.

What are the laws regarding returning to work and workers’ compensation in South Dakota?

According to the South Dakota Department of Labor & Regulation:

If the medical practitioner says your employee can return to work for part-time or modified work and you can accommodate the restrictions, state law requires the employee to accept the employment. If he or she refuses to accept light-duty work, your employee risks the loss of some or all of his or her workers’ compensation benefits.

If your employee is released to part-time or modified work and is earning less than what he or she was earning at the time of the injury, the employee may be entitled to temporary partial disability benefits. Temporary partial disability benefits are calculated as half the difference between the average amount the employee was earning before the injury and the average amount the employee is earning or is able to earn in some suitable employment after the injury.

The total compensation for earnings and workers’ compensation benefits may not be less than the amount received for temporary total disability, unless the employee refuses suitable employment.

If you are unable to accommodate an employee’s light-duty restrictions and do not offer work to the employee, he or she will still receive temporary partial disability benefits, but at a rate equal to the amount received for temporary total disability.

South Dakota Statistics*

*2018 business stats provided by the U.S. Small Business Administration


number of South Dakota residents employed by small businesses


average annual snowfall, in inches


average annual snowfall, in inches

2.5 million

number of annual visitors to Mount Rushmore


UFO sightings

South Dakota Businesses We Cover with Workers' Comp Insurance

We are continually adding more industries. To get a quick, free quote, click here.

burger and shake graphic
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

Get a Free Quote
laptop graphic
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!)

Get a Free Quote
legal services graphic
Legal Services

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

Get a Free Quote
shopping cart graphic
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

Get a Free Quote
cap of graduation gown
Educational Services

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

Get a Free Quote
gears graphic

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

Get a Free Quote
barbershop graphic
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

Get a Free Quote
hangers graphic
Clothing Retail

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

Get a Free Quote
gaming controller graphic
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

Get a Free Quote
medical services graphic
Medical Professions

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

Get a Free Quote
construction services graphic
Architecture & Engineering Services

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

Get a Free Quote
piggy bank grahpic
Financial Services

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

Get a Free Quote
beaker graphic
Scientific Services

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

Get a Free Quote
floral graphic
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

Get a Free Quote
brain on a chase lounge
Therapeutic Services

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

Get a Free Quote

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. You can request a Certificate of Insurance (COI) to provide proof of insurance. You can 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.
Starting a small business is nothing less than an act of bravery. Those who dare to do it deserve total support — and that’s why we built Cerity. We reimagined insurance to meet the needs and wants of small businesses, making it easier, more flexible, and more transparent. Founded by a company that’s insured over 100,000 small businesses, we have the experience (and empathy) to help you get the workers’ comp coverage you need, fast. Check out our free workers’ comp quote tool to see for yourself.
You do not need any documents to apply, however it will be helpful to have your business FEIN on hand. 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 on a policy you can purchase easily online.