Workers Compensation Insurance in Massachusetts (MA)

Small Business Coverage and Peace of Mind

Massachusetts is a state of firsts. Plymouth was home to the first American colony in 1620, Cambridge is the site of Harvard University, America’s oldest college and Boston is the “Cradle Of Liberty” where the American Revolution was born. The Bay State is also a place of scenic beauty where the dazzling splendor of Cape Cod gives way to the green rolling hills of the Berkshire Mountains.

As home to Boston and Springfield, Massachusetts is an economic powerhouse and national leader in financial and insurance services, higher education, biotechnology and tourism. 13 Fortune 500 companies are located in the Bay State, but small businesses are the driving force of the Massachusetts economy. Small businesses provide employment to 47 percent of the state’s private-sector labor force.1

In 1911, Massachusetts became the nation’s second state to pass a workers’ compensation law. Today, all employers in the state are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage to all of their employees, regardless of the amount of hours worked. Domestic employees who work at least 16 hours per week must also be covered. Employers are required by law to post the name of their workers’ compensation carrier in common areas or they face a $100 fine.2

What are the Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Requirements?

All employers operating in the state of Massachusetts are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, including themselves if they are an employee of their company, regardless of part-time or full-time status. The only exception is for domestic employees who must work at least 16 hours a week to be covered under a workers’ compensation policy. Members of a LLC, partners of a LLP, or sole proprietors are exempt from workers’ compensation insurance. Corporate officers who own at least 25% interest in the corporation can also file for an exemption.3

If an employer fails to carry workers’ compensation insurance the Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents’ Office of Investigations will issue a stop work order. Minimum fines are $100 per day including weekends and holidays, beginning on the day the stop work order was issued. Employers may also be subject to criminal charges including to one year in prison and/or a $1500 fine upon conviction.3

How Does Workers’ Compensation Work in Massachusetts?

Massachusetts workers’ compensation insurance pays for necessary medical treatment related to injuries or illnesses incurred on the job. It also pays for lost wages, cost of travel to and from a doctor’s office and for full or partial disability resulting from a work-related injury.4

Like most other states, Massachusetts has a private workers compensation market where employers purchase policies from private insurance carriers. Some of the top small businesses that purchase workers’ compensation insurance in Massachusetts include restaurants, hotels, grocery stores, information, financial and insurance firms, as well as colleges and universities.

Massachusetts Workmans’ Comp Coverage You Need

Interested in learning more about how EMPLOYERS can help your Massachusetts business? Request a quote for workers’ compensation insurance from EMPLOYERS!

Thousands of small businesses trust EMPLOYERS for providing cost-effective workers’ compensation insurance for over a century. With our competitive pricing, financial stability and dependability, claims service, safety training and risk advisory programs, EMPLOYERS remains focused on keeping America’s small businesses not only working, but working safely.

1. “Small Business Profile, Massachusetts,” SBA Office of Advocacy, February 2013,

2. “Employer’s Guide to the Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation System,” Commonwealth of Massachusetts, April 2014,

3. “Workers’ compensation insurance requirements,” Commonweath of Massachusetts.

4. “Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Guide For Injured Workers,” The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, July 2013,