A Guide to Workers Compensation in Canada

By February 27, 2017November 9th, 2017No Comments
A Guide to Workers Compensation in Canada

As hard as you try to avoid it, accidents do happen in the workplace. Given the nature of unavoidable occurrences, workers compensation in Canada is a must when you expand to the North. These programs protect employees from the financial hardships associated with work-related injuries and illnesses.


To help your team prepare the requirements associated with international expansion to Canada, we’re pulling together tips for managing workers compensation in this post.

The first thing to understand from a management standpoint is that workers compensation in Canada is organized by provinces. When you enter the market, you should partner with an in-country expert to help you manage requirements associated with your specific location. For example, the workers’ comp arrangements are different in Alberta than they are in Ontario.

Now it’s time to move onto a few other tips to help you understand this important statutory right.

Workers Compensation in Canada: Tips for Getting Started

  • Registering your Business

Upon entering Canada, you’ll need to register your business with your provincial Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB). As for premiums, you’ll pay for Workers’ Compensation Insurance (WCI) in accordance with your company’s industry.

  • Create a Safe Workplace

As an international employer, you can prevent an increase in workers’ comp premiums by reducing claims. Aim to create a safe workspace to prevent illness and injuries onsite. Also, always report injuries and work with employees to help them recover so they can return to work.

  • Workers Compensation in Canada is Mandatory

Whether or not your business chooses to pay into a workers’ compensation plan (we highly suggest you do), it is a statutory right for employees. That means that if a team member is injured or falls ill on the job, your business must provide them with sick pay for the number of days off due to the injury/illness.

Paying into a designated and organized workers’ comp program keeps this benefit streamlined and compliant. For assistance with managing entitlements overseas, consider using an employer of record (EOR) service like International PEO (Professional Employer Organization).

  • No Coverage for Independent Contractors

If your company hires foreign contractors, you do not have to withhold statutory deductions like workers’ compensation coverage from their paychecks. Working with contractors does save your firm money on payroll, but it’s a risky relationship. Learn more about the risks of working with overseas contracts in this post.

Employee Benefits from Workers Compensation in Canada

Overall, workers’ compensation is a security blanket for employees. It covers illness or injury from job-related incidents.

Employees expect to receive the following benefits from their plan:

  • Wages During Time Off Work
  • Medical Aid & Rehabilitation as Needed
  • Permanent Disability Benefits
  • Survivor Benefits
  • General Health Care

In addition, workers compensation in Canada covers the cost of medical treatment, hospital services, prescriptions, and other medical equipment such as a wheelchair. Plus, the benefit typically covers services from specialists such as an occupational therapist, chiropractor, and psychologist.

For assistance with managing workers compensation in Canada, confide in one of our international consultants. In addition, we work with teams in Canadian provinces and can help you navigate this important employee benefit.