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Workers' Compensation for Virginia Businesses

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

According to the Virginia state website

Workers compensation insurance is required by state law for most employers. Workers’ compensation insurance was established to provide specific benefits to workers injured out of and in the course of their work and to provide employers with a protection from civil suit for work related injuries.

Coverage Requirements:
As a general rule, a business with more than two employees is required to carry workers’ compensation coverage. An employee is viewed broadly under workers’ compensation law and includes part-time, seasonal and temporary workers, minors, trainees, immigrants and working family members.

For a contractor or other business that hires subcontractors to assist in their trade, business or to complete a contract, the subcontractors’ employees are included when counting the total number of employees to assess when coverage is required. If the total of the contractor’s employees plus the sum total of subcontractors’ employees is more than two, then coverage is required. This requirement applies regardless of whether the subcontractor has their own workers’ compensation coverage. For additional contractor information read the Contractor Information Sheet. An employer that is not required to carry coverage under the law may obtain coverage voluntarily.

Across State Lines:
Virginia requires Virginia coverage for work performed in Virginia, even temporary work. Virginia does not have reciprocity with any other states. Most employers with coverage based out of state can obtain proper Virginia coverage with the addition of a Virginia endorsement on the existing policy adding Virginia to item 3A of the policy. Virginia listing under item 3C of the policy is not sufficient.

No Waiver:
Virginia does not provide a waiver or exemption form for a sole proprietor or other business that is not required to carry coverage under the Act.

Officer Exclusions:
An executive officer may reject coverage under the Act with proper notice to the employer and the Commission. For additional information see Officer Exclusion Information.

Employer Duties:
Every employer shall keep a record of all injuries or deaths of its employees which occur in the course of employment. An employer should educate employees on injury reporting before an injury occurs and should immediately notify its insurer upon notice of an injury. Employers subject to the Act must also conspicuously post a workers’ compensation notice indicating compliance with the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act.

Dual Regulation:
Workers’ compensation insurance is under dual regulation in Virginia. The Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission oversees the Act and coverage compliance. To contact the Insurance Department phone: (804) 205-3586 or email: vwcinsurance@workcomp.virginia.gov.

The Bureau of Insurance oversees insurance regulation related to premium, pricing, rates and audits. To contact the Bureau phone (804) 371-9185 or email: bureauofinsurance@scc.virginia.gov.

How do I get workers’ comp for my Virginia business?

Workers’ compensation insurance in Virginia can be obtained easily through our free quote service. Once a Virginia employer obtains workers’ comp insurance or authority to self-insure, the employer is required to post a notice of workers’ compensation insurance advising their employees of the coverage and of the employee’s right to reject this coverage. The employer is also required to supply “rejection” forms for employees.

Virginia Statistics*

*2017 business stats provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics

1.5 million

number of Virginians employed by small businesses


82,978

number of workplace injuries


$78 million

annual tobacco crop value


8

U.S. Presidents


230,000 lbs

peanut butter used weekly to make Girl Scout cookies


Virginia 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.