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Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Hawaii

Workers' Compensation Insurance in Hawaii

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If your business has employees in the state of Hawaii, you’ll need to make sure you adhere to Hawaii’s Workers’ Compensation Insurance laws. Workers’ Compensation provides medical and financial benefits for employees who suffer work-related injuries or illnesses or for their survivors in the case of an employee death.

Who needs Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Hawaii?

Hawaii requires all employers with one or more employees to obtain Workers’ Compensation Insurance. In Hawaii, an “employee” is generally defined as any individual in the employment of another and is not an independent contractor. 

The Hawaii Workers’ Compensation Law (WCL) defines all of the requirements for Workers’ Comp in Hawaii, and the Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Disability Compensation Division (DCD) monitors, enforces, and administers the program. Ensuring your company is in compliance is critical, as there are serious penalties and fines for those who fail to abide by state regulations.

What employees are covered under Workers’ Compensation in Hawaii?

Almost all workers are covered under Workers’ Compensation in Hawaii. If you provide work or services for an employer, and you are not an independent contractor, you will likely be eligible for Workers’ Compensation Insurance. 

The following are categories of employees that are eligible for Workers’ Comp coverage:

The following are categories of employees that are generally excluded from Workers’ Comp coverage:

What Workers’ Compensation benefits do employees receive?

Under Workers’ Compensation in Hawaii, employers are required to provide the following benefits to employees who are injured in the course of employment:

Medical Benefits

Temporary Total Disability Benefits

Temporary Partial Disability Benefits

Permanent Partial Disability Benefits

Permanent Total Disability Benefits

Disfigurement Benefits

Vocational Rehabilitation Benefits

Death Benefits

What are the penalties for breaking Hawaii Workers’ Compensation laws?

Failure to adhere to the Workers’ Compensation laws set out by the WCL can result in significant fines and even imprisonment. In order to avoid any costly penalties, it’s important to consult the WCL or your insurer to ensure you are in compliance. Below are the major ways in which companies can be penalized:

Failure to Obtain Coverage

Employees Paying Premiums

Failure to Pay Compensation

Failure to Report


How much does Workers’ Compensation Insurance cost in Hawaii?

According to the National Academy of Social Insurance Workers’ Compensation Report (November 2020), the average employer cost for Workers’ Compensation in Hawaii was $1.67 per $100 of covered wages. This figure is estimated across all insurers and all industries, so the cost to your particular business may vary.

How does the Workers’ Compensation claims process work in Hawaii?

Employees should immediately report injuries to their employer, either verbally or in writing. Claims should be filed within five years. Employers must file a report of the injury to the DCD within seven working days. If a claim is denied or other issues arise, both the employer and the employee may request a hearing. A decision will be made within 60 days after the hearing. Either party may appeal the decision within 20 days of the date of the decision. 

Hawaii Workers’ Compensation Insurance Resources

For more information on Hawaii Workers’ Compensation laws and requirements, please visit the following resources:

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