Iowa is a diverse state, and a crossroads in America's heartland. The Hawkeye State's economic and social climate lends itself to a large hospitality industry. This includes a thriving food service sector.
There are 6,129 restaurants and other eating establishments in Iowa. The sector employs around 153,700 individuals. This includes 100,600 employees directly in restaurant positions. This means the restaurant industry is a crucial employer in the state. Restaurant owners must follow a variety of laws to see to the safety of their employees. Most Iowa restaurant owners must provide workers compensation coverage for their staff.
Workers Compensation Rules
Workers compensation governs how employers compensate employees for on-the-job injuries or illnesses. Generally, if employees get hurt or sick on the job, the employer must pay the employee.
States recognize workers compensation insurance as a way of supporting employees who would work if not for the on-the-job injury they sustained. Often, an employer must provide workers compensation coverage regardless of whether the employer was at-fault for the employee's injury. Workers compensation insurance can help incapacitated employees receive an income to cover their everyday needs and medical costs while they recover.
Protecting Restaurant Employees with Workers Compensation Insurance
Should an Iowa restaurant employee sustain an injury on the job, the employer might have to start a workers compensation claim. Usually this involves:
- Documenting the claim by taking an employee statement, photos of the accident scene or collecting other evidence.
- Notifying the restaurant's workers compensation insurer of the claim.
- Notifying the proper authorities as prescribed by Iowa law. For more information on reporting practices, visit the Iowa Division of Workers Compensation website.
Restaurants should go out of the way to comply with workplace safety laws. This can greatly reduce the chances of employment injuries.
Here are some tips for promoting a safe workplace:
- Enforce all safety standards required by the Iowa Food and Consumer Safety Bureau, federal law and the Iowa Division of Labor.
- Frequently survey your business for signs hazards that might harm employees.
- Educate employees about potential hazards they might encounter. These might include fall risks, burn risks, and injuries related to the use of certain equipment.
- Do not allow employees to work in situations with which they are not familiar. An employee who works outside their area of expertise runs the risk of harming themselves.
- Should an employee voice safety concerns, take immediate steps to fix the problems.
If you need to file a workers compensation claim, do not delay. You must report claims within a specified time period. Follow all legal requirements to document workers compensation claims. Also, contact an Exceed Insurance agent if you have questions about your coverage.