Some employers fake having workers' comp coverage.
Texas law allows companies to either opt-into or out of workers' comp coverage. Companies that opt-in only have to pay injured workers the bare minimum and can never be sued. Companies that opt-out of workers' comp coverage are called non-subscribers and they can be sued for great sums of money.
As you can see, if an employer does not have the lawsuit immunity that workers' comp provides, they have an incentive to lie and to pretend that they actually have workers' comp coverage. Why would they do this? Well, it allows them an opportunity to avoid the expense of workers' comp coverage. Yet by pretending they have it, their injured employees are tricked into thinking they cannot sue. In this article Texas work injury attorney Michael Grossman will explain how this works.
Questions Answered on This Page:
- Should I believe my employer when they tell me our company has Workers' Comp?
- How do I find out if my employer has workers' comp or if they're a non-subscriber?
- What can i do if I think my employer is lying about having worker's comp coverage?
Why would a non-subscriber employer try to deceive me about their lack of worker's comp coverage?
Many non-subscriber employers wrongfully represent to their injured workers that they have worker's comp coverage when, in fact, they just have some other type of occupational injury insurance coverage.
Why? If your employer is a subscriber, they are protected against lawsuits for personal injury and the law limits how much they are required to pay any injured worker. They are afforded this protection by paying for workers' compensation; without this protection they can be sued for significant compensation. But, if your employer can convince you that they have worker's comp coverage, they may be able to dissuade you from filing suit against them to recover any damages.
Section 419.001 of the Texas Labor Code
Sec. 419.001. DEFINITIONS. (a) In this chapter:
- "Representation of the division's logo" includes a nonexact representation that is deceptively similar to the logo used by the division.
- "Representation of the state seal" has the meaning assigned by Section 17.09(a)(2), Business & Commerce code.
- a reasonable person would believe that the term or representation is in any manner approved, endorsed, sponsored, authorized by, the same as, or associated with the division, the department, this state, or an agency of this state; or
- the circumstances under which the term is used could mislead a reasonable person as to its identity.
What this section of the code means is that an employer is not allowed to produce documents which contain symbols or names that are similar to the state approved worker's compensation program logo. If they provide documents with symbols and logos similar to the state-sanctioned worker's comp program, they are attempting to deceive their employees.
Employers are required to notify their employees as to the status of their participation in the workers' comp program. If an employer misrepresents their status, they may be held accountable through an administrative penalty.
Call Grossman Law Offices:
If you believe that your employer is wrongfully attempting to portray that they are offering workers' compensation and are protected by those designated laws, (and they are simply providing another form of injury compensation) then you should immediately call one of our non-subscriber attorneys for a free consultation to discuss your options.
If you believe that they are intentionally being deceptive about their protective status, then they are likely not paying you adequate compensation and you absolutely need help in holding them accountable. To learn more about how your employer may be misrepresenting their worker's compensation status, contact Grossman Law Offices, toll-free, at (855) 326-0000.
Other articles about non-subscriber work injuries that may be helpful: