What is the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board WSIB?

The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board WSIB is an independent trust agency operating under the Ministry of Labour. WSIB provides no-fault liability insurance and workers’ compensation to Ontario’s workplaces.

Employers registered with the WSIB pay monthly premiums as they would any other insurance policy. For employers, these premiums go towards protecting you in the event a worker suffers an injury in a workplace accident. This collective liability insurance gives employers peace of mind knowing they’re generally protected from being sued by an injured worker.

Workers injured in a workplace accident are entitled to receive benefits paid out by the WSIB, including healthcare coverage and loss of earnings benefits. The WSIB can also assist both employers and workers when it’s time for an injured employee to return to work.

Businesses required to register with the WSIB

Most businesses in Ontario are required to register with the WSIB within 10 days of hiring their first employee. Some examples of required businesses include:

  • Restaurants/bars;
  • Sales and services;
  • Manufacturing;
  • Trucking and transportation; and
  • Homeowners and private residents who hire domestic employers such as nannies, babysitters, and gardeners who work more than 24 hours a week.

There are a few exceptions. Types of businesses that are not legally required to register with the WSIB include banks, insurance companies, barbers or hair salons (with exceptions), private schools or daycares, travel agencies, and several others.

However, many employers in these industries still choose to register with the WSIB to ensure their workers are fully protected. If you’re not sure whether you’re legally required to register with the WSIB give us a call and we can advise.

WSIB for small businesses

Small businesses and startups often rely on the WSIB to provide financial security in the event of a workplace accident. If you are not sure if you should register, give our friendly health and safety experts a call today and we can point you in the right direction.

Employer responsibilities under WSIB

Employers have a number of responsibilities under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board. In addition to registering within the first 10 days of hiring the first employee, employers must:

Report incidents: Report workplace incidents to the WSIB within three (3) days when the incident causes a worker to:

  • Lose time from work
  • Earn less than their regular day’s pay
  • Receive healthcare treatment

The WSIB requires employers to submit an accident report within three (3) business days from the moment they’ve become aware of a reportable incident.

If the worker needs health care on the day of the incident, your reporting obligation begins immediately. However, when the worker only needs first aid and returns to modified work at full pay, then the employer’s reporting obligation generally doesn’t begin until the eighth calendar day from the incident. After this period, the WSIB must receive the employer’s report within three business days.

Keep records: Employers must keep records of the incident, how it was handled, and the time it takes for your worker to recover.

Report material changes: Employers must report any circumstantial changes that affect the employer’s obligations to the WSIB within 10 days.

Penalties for non-compliance

Late report submissions and failure to meet reporting requirements may result in administrative penalties ranging from $250 to $1,000.

Failure to report workplace incidents is considered an offence under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (WSIA). Corporations may be prosecuted and receive significant penalties of up to $500,000. Individuals who fail to report incidents may receive penalties of up to $25,000 and, in some cases, six months of imprisonment.

Have questions about the WSIB and your employer obligations? Call us today.

Our workplace health and safety experts are happy to answer any questions you have about WSIB and other health and safety standards in Ontario. We’re available to small business employers at 1-888-216-2550.