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CA Contractors:  Disability Insurance *Required*?

I have a private client with whom I've been working for about a year now. This client insists that if I am not carrying my own disability insurance policy (which I am not), then they are required to pay Worker's Comp as though I were a regular W2 employee.

I cannot get my insurance guy or my attorney on the phone right now, and I'm feeling pressured. I'm told that I have to have coverage in place before the next time I invoice them. Or what? I don't know.

Are contractors required by CA to carry disability insurance? And if they do not, are their clients then penalized somehow? That just makes no sense.

Does anyone know ahything about this subject?

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

In VA, I believe it only happens if you have more than a few employees (like 2 or 3).  Even then, I understand the fees to be rather small, as the probability of incident is rather low for someone getting disabled in our business.

H. Lally Singh
Tuesday, January 27, 2004

There's no requirement that independent contractors have
anything - you're just a sole proprietor, or S corp.  I did
have a contract where I had to buy "won't go berzerk and
shoot up the place" biz insurance due to a client requirement.
It was a juicy enough contract that I went ahead and got it.
It cost $500/year for a $1M policy.

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Norrick wrote, "Does anyone know ahything about this subject?"

The only appropriate answer I can give you is to contact your attorney ASAP and if he/she is truly unavailable then seek counsel from another attorney.  Just because your contract with this particular client doesn't specify that you must carry WC insurance doesn't mean you don't legally have to do so.

Feel free to post this topic again when you find out what California law actually requires from you.

One Programmer's Opinion
Wednesday, January 28, 2004

The official CA website on such things...

It isn't obvious from this website, but it probably can
be googled up within it.  If not, call the shyster, er, lawyer.

SDI wasn't required when I was contracting in CA, and
I did consult for some quite anal outfits, so unless
something has changed in the past few years, it probably
isn't.  Also, SDI is only applicable to _employees_ - sole
proprietors don't need it even now.  This I _do_ know;
my wife is a 1099 contractor, although not in programming.
But I'll admit that I don't know the current situation if
you're consulting as a corp drawing a salary.

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

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