All law firms that employ any worker (which includes all full-time, part-time and casual associate lawyers, students-at-law, paralegals, legal assistants, and other support staff) must register with WCB as an employer.
If you are practising as an unincorporated sole proprietor or partner, you are not considered to be a worker of the firm for WCB purposes, but you may voluntarily apply for personal coverage. If you are incorporated, however, you are considered to be a worker and your law corporation is considered to be an employer. Accordingly, your law corporation must register.
WCB registration takes place online. To register you will need information including:
Once registration is complete, you will be assigned a classification and a premium rate that you will use to calculate how much is due to WCB.
As an employer, you are generally protected from a successful suit for the costs of work-related injury or disease.
A worker whose claim is accepted will receive benefits for:
WCB sets a rate assessment each year for you, calculated on the basis of your gross annual payroll for the previous year. Your payroll records are subject to audit by WCB and you can be fined if you do not keep proper records, give untrue or inaccurate payroll statements, or refuse access to your books and accounts.
Once your assessment rate is set, WCB will advise you of how much is due and when it is due. Your assessment rate will be set each year based on the premium rate for the industry in which you operate. For example, in 2020, employers operating law offices were subject to a premium rate of $0.18 for every $100 of payroll.
WCB’s Experience Rating Program rewards employers for their efforts in maintaining safe workplaces. Your premiums may be raised or lowered depending on your claims history over a three-year period.
Your obligations include reporting your payroll and making your assessed payments. You can report your payroll, make your assessed payments, and manage your account online.
Annual premiums can be paid in two installments, on April 1 and September 1. Failure to remit by the applicable due date results in penalty.
In addition to financial obligations, employers are required to:
Want more information?
Understanding the WCB: Guide for Employers gives complete instructions for registering your business, reporting claims, and complying with other employee obligations.
As well, you can find targeted information for employers on everything from contract work to optional personal coverage to employer appeals on WCB’s Employer Forms and Fact Sheets webpage.