Post a new topic
    11 Replies Latest reply on Apr 24, 2009 3:02 PM by fundme

    Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?

    FlyinBob Newbie

      I'm a self-employed aviation engineer. I was crouching under the low wing of a client's airplane and cut my scalp on the airplane flap. After a trip to the hospital, stitches etc, everything's fine now (and I certainly am not going to involve my client in this - they were with me at the time and helped patch me up, and this was no fault of theirs).

      But I wonder, because the injury happened "on the job", are the medical costs I incurred deductible in some manner besides the usual; should they be recategorized somehow? If this had happened to an employee, the picture may have been clearer.

        • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
          gagirl Newbie
          If the hospital bill is not too expensive and you can afford it, i would suggest that you don't file as workers compensation, pay it out of your pocket. If you decide to file it, your worker's compensation insurance will increase.

          In the future if something minor and does not required hospitalization, go to an urgent care facility and pay out of pocket, usually the doctor's will give you discount and will not charge you as much as he/she will charge the insurance.
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
            DomainDiva Ranger
            Your accountant should be able to help you get the deduction (If any) you may be entitled to.
            1 of 1 people found this helpful
            • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
              GasisaRipoff Newbie
              Your health insurer will deny this if they know it happened on a job site. If an employee was injured instead of you, that would get complicated, espeically if you had no Workers Comp coverage for them.

              This would likely be a business operation expense if you are going to pay for it out of pocket. Your client's liability insurance would cover it for you. I get the feeling that you feel that would alienate the client. As a former GL (General Liability) insurance adjuster, the responsible party would be your client's GL carrier.

               

              James J Moore, AIC, MBA, ChFC, ARM
              J&L Risk Mgmt Consultants, Inc.
              (800) 813-1386 Direct Line

               

              (877) 4-COMP-HELP Ext 701

               

              http://www.cutcompcosts.com/

               

              Blog http://www.cutcompcosts.com/www/blog.html
              Cutting Employers' WC Costs for 11+ Years

               

                • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
                  FlyinBob Newbie
                  Thanks James, you've answered my question.

                  To comment and wrap up:

                  1. I think it's not fair to self-employed that a health insurer would deny this if it happened on a job site. I told them when I took the policy that I am self-employed. What other insurance could I get?

                  2. I don't have employees; at one point I had to prove to a client's personnel department that I was not an employee, by procuring Workers Comp insurance as an employer. I did, but cancelled after a couple years: this insurance made no sense because I have no employees, and if anything happened to me, the workers comp wouldn't be available to me. It's stupid. But if I did take on employees, of course I'd get the Workers Comp insurance for them.

                  3. Thanks for clarifying the tax position of this: a business operation expense for me if I pay it out of pocket. But, this should really be covered by the client's GL insurance.

                  4. This is all sticky when you walk into an ER and get treated. They take your insurance card and away you go.

                  5. Yep, I felt there was no way I'd bring the client into it if I could help it. I'm glad to have the work and the relationship and the referrals. It's a small world in aviation.

                  Maybe this is an area that there should be clarification in the law, especially as there are more self-employed out there.... Any other comments or experiences out there?

                  Thanks to all-
                  Bob
                    • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
                      GasisaRipoff Newbie

                      To answer your follow up questions:

                      1. That is a good question. The health carrier will only deny if you reported it as on the job. You can get business liability insurance, but then again you would not be covered.
                      2. You did the right thing to cancel your WC insurance. If you ever need a policy to do a job, you can get a ghost policy.

                       

                      3. If your health carrier denies it, then your client's GL would be the payer.

                       

                      4. You did the right thing to show your health insurance card.
                      5. Check with an agent as there are coverages you can get. However, how much will you spend on those coverages before another accident happens. You may want to look at the payment as premiums paid all at once.

                      Good luck and be safe,

                      James J Moore, AIC, MBA, ChFC, ARM
                      http://www.cutcompcosts.com

                       


                  • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
                    LUCKIEST Guide
                    Being Self Employed have some perks. Do you have an Accountant??
                    Do you have a separate checking account for the business and another one for you personally??
                    You state that this accident happened "on the job", so do you also want compensation
                    or salary for lost time at the hospital.
                    When it comes to doing my personal taxes, I deduct what I feel is "fair expenses"
                    and then wait until the I R S asks about that expense.
                    LUCKIEST
                      • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
                        FlyinBob Newbie
                        LUCKIEST,

                        To anwer your questions, with a few smiles along the way,

                        I don't have an accountant now, though I have during some years. Most didn't help, because all they focused on was taxes, not how I could run my business better. I track everything on an Excel spreadsheet. Used to be a Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheet when I started in '84..... EVERYTHING becomes an income or expense.

                        I do have a separate checking account, and B of A is glad to help by charging me for two.

                        Compensation or salary while sitting at the hospital: (I guess I could charge myself. But I know my business will see the extra expense. Oh well, never mind.) Your question seems to be based on an employee mindset, paid by the hour by someone else, and I try not to live there. I work by the project, though I often do charge by time spent. But I only charge when I'm working on their project.

                        I smile at your last comment too.....I have an airtight audit trail, so I guess I live in a different world than your business. Maybe it's being an engineer. I do my taxes Jan. 1 by printing out my spreadsheet, it's all there to the penny. Easier for a person like me, but it drove my ex-wife mad. I know shoebox-receipt people, but I could never operate that way ;-) Kinda dangerous, and my ethics sense would kill me all year.
                        • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
                          fundme Wayfarer
                          David,

                          How do i contact you?

                          Outside of this website
                        • Re: Self-employed and injured on the job - medical cost ramifications?
                          cutcomp Wayfarer
                          Here's something to keep in mind, at least for future reference. In most (but not all) states, even though you're a self-employed person, if you're injured while performing work for a client, your client is liable for the Workers Compensation liability of an uninsured subcontractor or independent contractor that they utilize--that is, you. In fact, when your client's Workers Comp insurer performs the annual premium audit of your client, they will probably notice his payments to you and charge premium to him for you, regardless of your not filing a claim. As I said, this is the case in many states, but not all, so you would need to check the rules in whatever state this happened in. But at least keep it in mind for future situations, if perhaps some more serious injury should happen. You might also want to consider obtaining your own Workers Compensation policy. In most states, sole proprietors and partners are not required to obtain their own Workers Compensation insurance, but can elect to obtain such coverage voluntarily. Many of your clients and potential clients might insist on this, as many larger companies are only too well aware that their insurance company will charge them premium for uninsured subcontractors and independent contractors, and so they require evidence of Workers Comp insurance from any contractors they utilize.