As a homeowner, you may know the importance of asking your home improvement contractors for a Certificate of Insurance to verify General Liability insurance. But, you should also be asking for proof of their Workman’s Compensation Insurance. If they do not have it, it can be a very scary thing for you as the homeowner.
Three out of five tree care companies do not have Workman’s Compensation Insurance coverage for their employees because of the cost. However, the tree care industry is actually the fourth most dangerous industry in the U.S. One tree care worker per week dies in the U.S. and, on average, two workers per week are seriously injured.
Many tree care companies are taking the risk with their staff by opting to save on the cost of getting coverage, keep their bids low and secure higher profit margins. However, this is at the expense of their employees.
Workman’s Compensation vs. General Liability Insurance
While many tree care companies do not have Workman’s Compensation coverage, four out of five of them carry General Liability Insurance. But, this does not cover employee injuries, it just covers the cost of damages to the properties where they are working. The problem with this is that you as the homeowner, or your insurance provider, become the liable party for the company’s employees. So, any injuries associated with the employee while they are working on your property will now be your responsibility! How scary is that?
No matter what a tree care company representative might say, it is Pennsylvania State Law for tree care companies to carry Workman’s Compensation Insurance. So, make sure you get proof of it before hiring a tree care company! It is not worth the risk.