Workers’ compensation protects both employers and workers from the results of workplace injuries. No matter who is responsible for a workplace injury, the worker receives benefits and the employer is protected against lawsuits.
Who is automatically covered by workers’ compensation?
- All workers in mandatory industries are covered, no matter how old they are.
- Directors that report employment income on a Canada Revenue Agency T4 income tax slip.
Who is not covered automatically?
- Firms or persons involved in industries listed in The Workers’ Compensation Act Miscellaneous Regulations or section 3 of the Act, and
- Directors not reporting employment income on a T4 slip can choose to purchase personal coverage.
- Owners of a sole proprietorship or partnership and their spouse
Those who are not covered automatically may be able to apply for voluntary coverage or personal coverage.
A director who is not active in the business is not considered a worker in the scope of the Act and coverage is not required. An inactive director is someone who does not perform any duties relating to the day-to-day operations of the corporation.
Optional personal coverage is for individuals not automatically covered under The Workers’ Compensation Act, 2013 (the Act). When personal coverage is purchased, the applicant becomes a worker and is eligible for benefits under the Act. Wage loss benefits will be based on the amount of coverage purchased by the applicant.
Optional personal coverage may be purchased by:
- Owners and their spouses;
- Partners and their spouses; and
- Directors that do not receive a Canada Revenue Agency T4 income tax slip.
Optional Personal Coverage (OPC) may be purchased for any amount between the minimum personal coverage amount and the maximum assessable wage rate for the current year. The 2019 amounts are: minimum $23,005 and maximum $88,314. The amount of coverage purchased should reflect actual employment earnings.
In the event of an injury, you will be required to provide proof of earnings. If your proof of earnings is less than the amount of coverage you have purchased, we will reduce your coverage to the confirmed amount. We will not give you a refund on your premiums so please make sure you choose an amount that is no more than your actual earnings.
For more information on coverage and how to apply see our fact sheet.
Saskatchewan WCB insurance coverage generally applies when you send your Saskatchewan workers to other provinces to work. However, you must contact the WCB Employer Services departments in those provinces to find out if you need to register with them (see our brochure, Coverage for Saskatchewan Employers Operating out of Province/Country).
For workers coming into Saskatchewan
If you’re an employer from another province or country with workers doing work in Saskatchewan, contact Employer Services to find out if you have to register (see our brochure Coverage for Out-of-Province Employers Operating in Saskatchewan).
Contract situations involve:
- A principal –the person or business that hires the contractor to do work for them.
- A contractor – the person or firm doing the work, or the person or business that gets the contract. A contractor may also be referred to as a subcontractor.
Contract situations are present in all industries. Examples of contract situations include a restaurant that hires a plumber to fix a sink or a business office that hires a contract cleaner.
When you hire someone to do work for you on a contract basis, they may be considered an employer in their own right (if they have workers or have chosen and were granted optional coverage), or they will be considered your worker. If they are considered your worker, you will pay premiums based on the labour portion of the contract – this will be billed in the year following or you can increase your payroll estimate to include non-reporting contract wages. If you hire a contractor, make sure that you won’t be responsible before making any payments for their work by obtaining a clearance letter.
Letters of Good Standing & Clearances
A letter of good standing can be requested at any time. It is valid on the day it is requested. Once a contract has been awarded and before work begins, the principal can request a letter of good standing from us. This letter will tell the principal if the contractor has an account with us and if all premiums are paid.
A clearance is a letter from us that tells the principal that they can make a payment to a contractor for completed work. Clearance are obtained after the work is completed, but before payment is made. All contract situations require clearances. By requesting clearances, principals protect themselves from having to pay any overdue premiums the contractor owes us. They also help us identify new employers and make sure that all employers are being treated fairly.
You can request clearances and letters of good standing online through your online services account.
Your secure online account also gives you access to the Automatic Clearance Verification (ACV) system. This system provides automatic email notification of any changes in the clearance status of any contractors you list. The system allows you to maintain a list of frequently used contractors, and update the contract amounts as you pay the contractor. With the ACV system, you don’t have to get individual clearances. It is useful for firms who hire the same contractors on a regular basis. If a status changes, you can log in to see what we are advising you to do.
When you get a clearance, you will see one of the following statuses:
- Cleared – pay the contractor.
- Deemed – no account, considered your worker.
- Hold – wait for further information.
- Demand – pay the sum requested from the amount you owe the contractor.