The Alberta government has recently introduced the Farm Freedom and Safety Act (FFSA)*, impacting workplace insurance requirements for farm and ranch owners. These changes will take effect January 31, 2020.
What does this mean to you?
The FFSA introduces two main changes that may impact your workplace insurance requirements as an employer:
- Coverage for large employers: Employers with six or more employees are required to ensure their waged, non-family workers, are covered either through WCB or private insurance.
- Coverage for small employers: Employers are not required to have workplace insurance if they have five or fewer employees, or hire workers for less than six consecutive months. If a small employer chooses to take out coverage, they can do so through WCB or private insurance.
Coverage for family members and non-waged workers remains optional.
*Note: Under the legislation, workers' compensation requirements for greenhouses, nurseries, mushroom and sod farms remain mandatory.
How does workers’ compensation coverage benefit you and your workers?
There are several unique aspects of WCB coverage to consider when comparing insurance providers.
- WCB protects workers and employers against financial loss in the event of a work-related injury or death through no-fault disability insurance. This means that regardless of who may be at fault for an accident, WCB assumes the liability for a workplace injury or fatality, and parties covered by WCB are provided immunity against lawsuits.
- There are also no preset limits to the benefits that are provided to injured workers. An injured worker will continue to receive coverage for wage loss, medical treatment, prescriptions and more for as long as there is any remaining disability.
- Proprietors, partnerships and/or directors of incorporated farms also may take out optional personal coverage for themselves. Personal coverage will provide them with benefits if injured at work, as well as provide them with personal immunity from lawsuit for workplace injuries. Without this coverage in place, they are not entitled to benefits and may be subject to lawsuit.
If you have any questions about workers’ compensation coverage to help you make an informed decision about the workplace insurance you choose, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-866-922-9221 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you do not currently have an account and would like to open one, you can register for an account today.
2020 Farming industry classifications and premium rates
We have developed industry classifications for farming operations to make sure we're grouping businesses together that have similar operations and risks. Below are the industry classifications as well as each industry's premium rate for 2020.
(per $100 of assessable earnings)
|Agri-tourism farms, greenhouses/market gardens, mushroom producers/bait farms||$1.75|
|Apiaries, fishing/fish or fur farms, goat/sheep producers, hog producers, poultry/egg producers||$1.80|
|Forage & peat moss processing, hay/grain/crop farming, harvesting/baling-custom||$2.31|
|Beef producers, dairy farms, elk/bison producers, feed lots, livestock auctions/stockyards, llama/alpaca producers, riding academies/horse stables||$3.05|