How does workers' comp work in North Dakota?

All North Dakota employers are required to buy workers' comp coverage through North Dakota’s Workforce Safety & Insurance (WSI). If an employee becomes injured or was previously injured while on the job, WSI can help you understand your responsibilities as an employer, how to file a claim for workers’ compensation, and to return your employees to work as quickly and efficiently as possible after the injury occurs.

Coverage can be obtained directly from WSI. The online application is a timesaving way to apply for workers' compensation insurance coverage online. Employers may also download the ND Application, complete it, and either fax it to 701-328-3750 or mail it to directly to WSI. A WSI representative will call to review your application. WSI will calculate your premium based on the payroll estimate you have provided and mail you a billing statement.

Employers can also call WSI Customer Service and request help from a Policyholder Services Underwriter at 800-777-5033.

Workers' Comp Rules & Information for North Dakota

About ND State Fund

Workforce Safety & Insurance (WSI_ is the sole provider and administrator of the workers’ compensation system in North Dakota. The state fund was established in 1919. In addition to collecting premium payments from employers and processing claims filed by North Dakota workers, WSI promotes employee safety by assisting employers in providing safe work environments. Benefits of WSI coverage include payment of medical, wage replacement, rehabilitation, impairment, and death benefits. General liability, health, and accident insurance are not alternatives for workers’ compensation insurance in ND.

North Dakota Contractors

If an employer's business includes construction or erection work, a division of payroll can be made for each separate and distinct type of construction or job functions when those functions are defined by a classification code. Separate records of payroll must be maintained and allocated to the use of each class code in connection with separate job or location. If contractors do not maintain separate payroll records, all payroll shall be assigned to the highest rate classification applicable to the business or operation.

ND Certificate of Premium

North Dakota sate law requires all employers to post a Certificate of Premium Payment along with the Fraud and Safety Hotline number, 1-800-243-3331, in a conspicuous place where employees will see the notice. This is required in order to inform employees of your compliance and providing them with the number they can use to report unsafe working conditions and actual or suspected workers’ compensation fraud. Employers generally receive their Certificate upon payment of workers' comp premium. The Certificate serves as your proof of insurance. Failure to comply with this statute may subject an employer to a penalty of $250.

Canceling Workers' Comp Coverage in ND

North Dakota law requires all state employers to carry coverage with WSI at any time you have any employees. Once WSI receives written notification of your request to cancel coverage, your policy will remain open in the event you rehire an employee. WSI will continue to mail payroll reports and billing statements. Requested payroll reports must be completed and returned to WSI regardless of whether or not you had any employees during this time period. Business owners who want to cancel their account at the time of policy renewal should indicate that on your payroll report. When cancelling coverage you must file a final payroll report and pay any premiums or other assessments due.

Business Owners and Family Coverage

Coverage for the owners, partners, or corporate officers of a business corporation, partnership, or limited liability company is optional in ND. An employer may elect to purchase optional coverage for themselves, their spouse, children younger than 22 years old. Work comp coverage is not required by law for owners. Coverage becomes effective upon WSI’s approval of a completed and signed optional coverage agreement. Coverage for an owner, partner, corporate officer, or spouse will be charged an annual premium based upon the workers compensation classification rate multiplied by the maximum taxable payroll cap. Coverage for the employer’s children younger than 22 years old is based upon the appropriate class rate multiplied by the actual wages paid to the child. Coverage for the employer’s children 22 years and older is mandatory and based upon the appropriate class rate multiplied by the actual wages paid up to the maximum taxable payroll cap.

Out of State Workers Compensation Coverage

WSI currently has reciprocal agreements for employees working out-of-state with the following 7 states: Idaho, Montana, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. These reciprocal agreements allow your North Dakota employees to work in those states on a temporary basis without buying a workers’ compensation policy in that jurisdiction. If employees do work in other states, the employer will need to obtain insurance in that state or purchase a multi-state insurance policy.

The reciprocal agreements for each state vary and may include exclusions. These agreements must be requested by the employer and be approved before becoming effective. Employers need to contact WSI before assuming they have ND state coverage for their employees working in these seven states. WSI has jurisdiction over a claim arising under a reciprocal agreement.

Generally, an employer who does not ensure compliance with other states’ workers’ compensation requirements may be unaware that they would be considered uninsured in another state until an employee files a workers' comp claim in another state. After an employee files the claim, an inquiry may be made as to the status of the employer’s workers' compensation coverage in the other state. If a North Dakota employer is deemed uninsured in that other state, the financial repercussions in premium and state penalties may be significant.

State Insurance Directives Regarding Covid-19

The State “Urges” all North Dakota insurers, producers, adjustors, and other persons licensed and authorized to transact the business of insurance within the state of North Dakota to provide flexibility and possible relief from certain insurance requirements to those North Dakota consumers and businesses that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including extension of premium payment deadlines; extension of existing premium grace periods; additional time before non-renewals or cancellations become effective; extension of proof of loss deadlines; development of payment plan options for consumers and businesses who are facing financial hardship; Waiver of fees, penalties, or other charges relating to an insured's temporary inability to submit premium payments or otherwise respond as a result of this public health crisis.

Discretionary order in effect from 03/30/2020 - further notice.

State Orders Regarding Insurance Claims Related to Coronavirus

No current state orders.

Specialized Programs for Select Industries

We work with our national insurance partners to develop targeted programs with easier underwriting requirements and lower rates. We offer a broad range of business class codes that help streamline the quote process so you get the lowest price for coverage.

Knowing the North Dakota workers comp requirements can help lower the cost of coverage.

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North Dakota Work Comp Information

Work Comp Effective Dates

North Dakota’s workers’ compensation rules require virtually all employers to purchase workers’ compensation insurance to cover their full-time, part-time, occasional, or seasonal employees prior to hiring any worker. Your workers' compensation coverage is effective upon receipt of a completed insurance application and approval from WSI Policyholder Services.

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Workers' Comp Includes Employers Liability Insurance?

Employers liability insurance is an additional layer of coverage included as part of a workers' compensation insurance policy. Employers Liability is known as Part 2 of the policy. It adds two additional coverages for employers:

Employers Legal Liability and Legal Defense Costs

In today's world, there are a variety of reasons employees and third-parties sue employers for damages. Here a some common types covered by employers liability insurance:

Third Party Lawsuits

Your employee sues another party that may have contributed to the injury, In turn, the third party sues your business.

Consequential Bodily Injury

Another party or individual is injured while providing care for the injured employee.

Dual Capacity Legal Action

An employee files a claim but also attempts to sue the employer for being responsible in other ways outside of the employment relationship.

Loss of Consortium

A spouse sues for damages caused by the loss of companionship or relations.

Employers Liability coverage is not included with coverage in the four monopolistic states. Employers in these states can endorse this coverage onto their General Liability policy. That coverage is commonly known as Stop Gap Coverage.

Workers' Comp Covers ND Employers from Injury Related Expenses & Lawsuits
Employers liability insurance is included under a workers' comp policy in most states.
  • Employers liability coverage is not included in all monopolistic states.
  • All NCCI and most other states' coverage includes employers liability insurance.
Visit NCCI for more resources and information about workers' compensation class codes. Visit United States Department of Labor for more information about government agencies managing workers compensation insurance rates.

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