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Posted on behalf of Harbin & Burnett on Apr 12, 2018 in Workers' Compensation

Old McDonald had a farm. But did he have worker's compensation insurance?

If his farm is in South Carolina, probably not. Agricultural employers are exempt from the requirment to have worker's compensation coverage, although they may voluntarily elect to carry coverage.  Other employers are also exempt under South Carolina law:

SECTION 42-1-360. Exemption of casual employees and certain other employments.

This title does not apply to:

(1) a casual employee, as defined in Section 42-1-130;

(2) any person who has regularly employed in service less than four employees in the same business within the State or who had a total annual payroll during the previous calendar year of less than three thousand dollars regardless of the number of persons employed during that period;

(3) a state and county fair association, unless the employer voluntarily elects to be bound by this title, as provided by Section 42-1-380;

(4) an agricultural employee, unless the agricultural employer voluntarily elects to be bound by this title, as provided by Section 42-1-380;

(5) a railroad, railroad employee, railway express company, or railway express company employee; nor may this title be construed to repeal, amend, alter, or affect in any way the laws of this State relating to the liability of a railroad or railway express company for an injury to a respective employee;

(6) a person engaged in selling any agricultural product for a producer of them on commission or for other compensation, paid by a producer, when the product is prepared for sale by the producer;

(7) a licensed real estate sales person engaged in the sale, leasing, or rental of real estate for a licensed real estate broker on a straight commission basis and who has signed a valid independent contractor agreement with the broker;

(8) a federal employee in this State;

(9) an individual who owns or holds under a bona fide lease-purchase or installment-purchase agreement a tractor trailer, tractor, or other vehicle, referred to as "vehicle", and who, under a valid independent contractor contract provides that vehicle and the individual's services as a driver to a motor carrier. For purposes of this item, any lease-purchase or installment-purchase of the vehicle may not be between the individual and the motor carrier referenced in this title, but it may be between the individual and an affiliate, subsidiary, or related entity or person of the motor carrier, or any other lessor or seller. Where the lease-purchase or installment-purchase is between the individual and an affiliate, subsidiary, or related entity or person of the motor carrier, or any other lessor or seller, the vehicle acquisition or financing transaction must be on terms equal to terms available in customary and usual retail transactions generally available in the State. This individual is considered an independent contractor and not an employee of the motor carrier under this title. The individual and the motor carrier to whom the individual contracts or leases the vehicle mutually may agree that the individual or workers, or both, is covered under the motor carrier's workers' compensation policy or authorized self-insurance if the individual agrees to pay the contract amounts requested by the motor carrier. Under any such agreement, the independent contractor or workers, or both, must be considered an employee of the motor carrier only for the purposes of this title and for no other purposes.

But just because you may fall into one of the above categories doesn't mean you are automatically precluded from bringing a worker's compensation claim. The character of the work performed and other factors may also determine whether you are a covered employee. That's why it is improtant to speak to a workers' compensation as soon as you can after an injury to determine whether you have a viable case.

If you have been hurt on the job, call us today for a FREE consultation.

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