liability protection

When should I do to protect myself if one of my workers gets hurt working on my property? Aside from LLC’s …ect. Should I ask if they have insuranse before they start? Is that enough?

Contractors should carry their own insurance. Ask to see the certificate of insurance and have your agent verfiy the policy is still in force. You need workmen’s comp and liability insurance for any W-2 employees or gypsy-workers you hire on the side. LLC’s and all the other entities won’t help much if you are an officer/manager and owner of the entity.


I could only comment on NY State law.

  • An LLC, or Corp will not protect the owners partners or corp officers as state law allows suing these individuals directlry for WC claims, provided it’s proven as a WC issue.

  • State law prohibits workers from suing the employer if WC is provided, though lawyers generally use the strategy of suing everyone but the employer to get around this.

  • Under NY State law, single proprietors, LLC partners, and corp officers of corps with at least 2 shareholders, but with no employees are EXEMPT from WC requirements, they can elect to have it none the less. You can elect to get the policy and then go on to add gypsy workers, or others considered employees elegible for WC.

  • Employing a licensed, insured contractor is usually preferred, but not possible in some cases. Just try getting these guys to fix a small leak or broken banister. So, you can wait for an insured guy showing up to avoid a WC claim, only to have a tenant or passerby injured in the meantime waiting weeks, suing you under GL. We had a discussion of this dilemma using tenants to shovel snow not long ago. You can hire a contractor to come and avoid injuring a tenant, the contractor can’t get there, and then a passerby, or even the tenant you’re trying to avoid hurting shoveling snow, sues for being injured slipping and falling because of the unplowed snow.

  • I’m currently looking into a WC policy for my property management corp, electing to put myself down as the “officer-insured”, and adding gypsy workers as the need arises.

  • The people initially coming after you may not be the WC claimant’s lawyer, but the hospital the worker’s taken to. If the worker is injured, 911 is called, goes into the hospital, and he’s got NO “insurance card”, the hospital will then ask him if he’s injured “at home or on the job”. And if it’s a gypsy worker, he says he hurt on the job, you can be sure the hospital will try to stick you with the bill, particularly if this guy is broke, illegal, or both. I don’t expect the hospital to quietly file the bill away. Be careful here as WC may not cover an illegal worker even with a WC policy.

have your contractors add you to thier policy while they are working on your property this will protect you since the injured party will sueyou andand everyone else within a 5 mile radius if he can since you aare on the contractors policy you will be covered in that event