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The A-Z guide to Missouri Workers' Comp

How does Workers’ Comp Work in Missouri?

All employers with five or more employees are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance under Missouri state law to cover the cost of medical treatment for an injured worker.

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Self-employed professionals who freelance do not need workers’ comp.

Who can be exempt?

  • Domestic workers
  • Farm workers
  • Real estate agents and brokers
  • Commercial truck drivers - owner operators

Is Workers’ Compensation Insurance required in Missouri?

All businesses with five or more employees are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance. If you are in a construction industry, it is required with one employee. This applies to all employers, regardless of whether the employees are part-time/casual laborers, full-time, or family members.

Who’s exempt from Missouri workers’ comp requirements?

The following types of workers are exempt: domestic workers, farm workers, real estate agents and brokers, and commercial truck drivers that are owner operated.

In some scenarios, LLC members can file not be covered, and S-Corp officers who own 40% of the business can be excluded. Speak to a knowledgeable agent to find out if this would apply to your business.

Is workers’ compensation insurance required for independent contractors?

Independent contractors who own their own business are subject to the law and are required to insure their liability by having workers’ compensation insurance if they have one or more employees and are construction industry employers or if they have five or more employees in all other industries.

To discuss eligibility for exemptions you may contact the state at

How much is workers’ comp coverage in Missouri?

While workers’ compensation insurance will come at a cost, it does not have to be exorbitant. The average workers’ comp rate in Missouri is $5.45 per $100 of payroll.

Your Missouri workers’ comp rate will depend on the following factors:

  • The type of business you have
  • The size of your payroll
  • Your safety record
  • Claim history

You can learn more about Missouri’s workers’ comp rates here. 

workers comp policy cost

How can Missouri small business owners save money on workers' comp?

The single best way to save money on your workers’ compensation insurance is to shop around. Compare quotes from different providers and then choose the insurance company that offers the right balance of coverage and affordability. 

You should also ensure that your employees are classified correctly and that you have a documented safety plan in place.

How does workman’s comp work in MO?

Here's a short breakdown: 

  • Annual Payroll Estimate: Begin by accurately estimating your yearly payroll. This calculation is crucial as it directly influences the premium required for coverage.
  • Year-End Audit: Following the completion of the policy term, an audit checks the precision of your payroll estimation. Depending on the outcome, you may need to adjust payments if the initial estimate was off-target.
  • Accurate Payroll Records: Maintain detailed payroll records throughout the policy period. These records are instrumental during the audit, helping to streamline the process and mitigate the risk of financial discrepancies.
  • Injury Reporting: In the event of an employee injury, notify your insurance company promptly. They handle the costs associated with the injury, which is vital for preserving your business's financial health.

What does workers’ comp cover in Missouri?

Workers who file a workers' comp claim in Missouri can receive benefits for the following:

workers comp covers medical bills

Medical bills

workers comp covers lost wages

Lost Wages

Workers' comp coverage also protects employers from legal action. This means that if an employee sues your business because of a workplace injury, the insurance will cover the legal costs of the case.

How to get workers’ compensation insurance in Missouri

Missouri businesses can obtain workers’ compensation insurance in several ways. The simplest and most common method is to compare quotes and purchase a policy through an agent.

At Kickstand Insurance, we can ensure you have the coverage your business needs for legal compliance, but also to protect your company and your employees.

Another option is to purchase coverage from the Missouri State Fund. This is usually reserved for businesses in high-risk industries not served by private insurance companies. 

Finally, large firms may choose to self-insure. To do this, you’ll need to apply for and receive permission from the state’s Department of Labor. It also means that you will pay for all workers’ compensation claims yourself, instead of working with an insurance company. 

What are the ramifications of failing to provide workers’ comp insurance in MO?

Depending on the situation, the business could be hit with fines and fees, as well as criminal charges. 

Businesses and business owners can face misdemeanor charges and, if found guilty, that comes with a financial penalty of up to three times the amount the business would have paid in workers’ compensation premiums, with a cap of $50,000. 

Businesses will also be liable for paying all medical and rehabilitation-related costs for employees suffering from work-related injuries or diseases that occurred while the employer did not carry workers’ compensation insurance. A second such infraction means that businesses and business owners will face felony charges.

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What are workers’ comp death benefits in MO?

Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to cover lost wages and medical costs but will also pay death benefits in the event that an employee is killed on the job or while performing work-related duties or dies from a work-related illness. 

Workers’ compensation death benefits in Missouri include:

  • Weekly compensation to survivors equal to 66.66% of the employee’s average earnings (not to exceed the state’s average weekly wage)
  • Up to $5,000 in burial expenses
  • Compensation for survivors for up to 500 weeks

How do workers’ comp settlements work in MO?

A settlement is when the employer, employee, and insurance company arrive at a mutually agreeable decision regarding the case. The insurance company provides the employee with a lump sum payment, and the employee can pursue no further action regarding the workers’ compensation claim in question.

What are the statutes of limitation regarding workers’ compensation in MO?

Missouri has very strict statutes of limitation regarding workers’ compensation claims. Employees have two years from the date of the injury or one year within the final payment from workers’ compensation to file a claim.

How do I get a workers’ comp insurance policy with Kickstand Insurance?

Start by filling out a short online form about your business. We’ll use that info to get you an estimated quote. Then, one of our experienced agents will contact you to review the quote and make sure you are getting the absolutely lowest rate possible for your business. Once the quote is finalized, you’re ready to buy the policy - often with coverage starting that day!

Learn more about Workers' Comp in Missouri

Why use Kickstand to
get workers' comp insurance?

Speed + Service + Experts

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Unlike other online insta-quote systems,
here your quote is reviewed by experts

Why does it matter?

  • Avoid surprise bills at audit
  • Make sure all your employees are properly covered
  • Protect yourself from lawsuits

What do we check?

  • Business categorized correctly
  • Employees job roles
  • Special discount opportunities
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