If you're a business owner, you're not automatically covered by workers' compensation benefits—only your workers are. Don't worry though, optional personal coverage is available to you. This coverage is available to:
- Business owners with or without workers.
- Partnerships with workers.
- Directors of a corporation and members of a society, board, authority, commission or foundation.
Personal coverage is flexible, and it can be opened and changed at any time. It automatically renews every year on December 31.
Registering for coverage
To register for personal coverage, you first have to open a WCB-Alberta account. Signing up is easy.
Choosing a coverage amount
Cost will vary based on the amount of coverage you purchase and the industry you’re in. The minimum annual premium on a WCB account is $200. It’s important to base the coverage on your actual employment earnings (earnings before tax, CPP and EI deductions). This amount will be used to determine the amount you receive if you're hurt at work. The compensation rates table below shows the approximate monthly benefit amounts.
If your income exceeds the maximum earnings covered by WCB ($98,700 in 2016), you may also consider carrying additional private insurance to make up the difference.
If injured, you will need to verify your self-employment earnings.This is done through records such as T4 slips, tax returns (T1 General), income and expense statements or payroll stubs. If your records do not match the amount of coverage purchased, compensation benefits will be based on the lesser amount of coverage purchased, guaranteed coverage amount (if applicable) or verified earnings (to the minimum, currently $22,200 in 2016).
If you’re a new business owner, we will request a copy of the previous year ‘s tax information. If you do not have a history of self-employed income, you may want to purchase minimum coverage until your business is established and you’re able to provide proof of personal employment income.
If you have any questions, please call our Contact Centre.
Working in more than one industry
Personal coverage gives you the option under one policy of splitting coverage between industries, companies and locations. If you’re an owner in more than one industry, company or location, the distribution of the personal coverage cost is split based on the percentage of time spent in each.
Personal coverage, like all workers’ compensation insurance, is based on the the overall operations of your business. If your business operations change or expand, please contact us so we can make sure your personal coverage is complete and covers you for all of your work-related activities. Coverage is only valid in the approved industries.
Compensation benefits depend on the level of coverage purchased. You may choose an amount between the minimum and maximum. The following chart shows the approximate monthly benefits for selected levels of coverage.
|2016 personal coverage levels||Approximate weekly compensation rate|
$22,200 (minimum 2016)
|$98,700 (maximum 2016)||$1,225.61|
For 2016, $22,200 is the minimum amount of coverage. (Those earning less should choose this amount.) The maximum amount of wage loss coverage is $98,700. If your income exceeds this amount, you should buy additional private insurance coverage.
Personal coverage fact sheet
Personal coverage is optional coverage for people not automatically covered through the workers' compensation system. This includes business owners with or without workers, partnerships with workers, and directors of a corporation and members of a society, board, authority, commission or foundation.