One of the largest exposures faced by Condos and Co-ops comes from having construction done at the insured location. Brokers often receive inquiries pertaining to how claims should be handled when a worker is injured, specifically in regard to workers compensation. An example of such a situation is this: A condo association hires a contractor to do repairs on a terrace. The contractor falls from the terrace and sustains injuries. It turns out that the contracting company, who was fully insured, had a lapse in workers comp coverage. Should the building file a workers comp claim to address the injuries sustained by the worker? The answer to this question is no, the building should not file a workers comp claim for a worker who is not their employee. Certainly, the building should file a general liability and umbrella claim to protect themselves. However, in terms of workers comp coverage—if the contractor’s workers comp insurance had a lapse, the workers comp board will assign the case to the Uninsured Employer’s Fund to handle.
It is important to remember, also, that the best way to protect the association is to obtain a full copy of the contractor’s policy for review, a contract which requires the building to be named as additional insured as well as a provision for indemnification of the building, and a hold harmless or other form of risk transfer. This process may seem daunting, but it needn’t be. As your broker, we are ready and able to review these documents for you to help with the process of protecting your interests.
For more information, please contact us.