As the weather warms and residents start to spend more time outdoors, many HOAs consider sprucing up their common areas. It’s true – pools, parks, and other shared spaces will need a little extra TLC to look their best!
Many residents take pride in their community and are eager to volunteer to help! However, with the extra assistance in cleaning, mowing, trimming, and planting comes extra liability for the association; this is why the board should be prepared with the right coverage.
Is Workers Compensation Really Necessary?
Some HOAs may wonder if a Workers Compensation Policy is worth the expense. After all, it’s just some basic spring cleaning … what could happen? Probably more than you think! Even at a community barbeque, each and every person who helps cook the food or clean up afterward is a potential liability. A simple fall while mopping a floor or cleaning up the pool area could result in hefty medical bills, and if the injury happened while the volunteer was assisting with association maintenance or during a community event, the association could be held fully liable for the expenses. HOAs can also refer to their CC&Rs to determine what type of policy is needed, as many associations’ documents require Workers Compensation coverage.
Who is Covered?
Many associations wrongly assume that their existing Workers Comp policy will cover board members, homeowners, or volunteers. Typically, most policies do not cover volunteers since they are not paid employees.
Even adding a Voluntary Compensation Endorsement does not cover volunteers, and will likely leave the association liable for all expenses related to a claim. This is why it’s imperative that proper coverage – and a true understanding of coverages – is necessary for all members.
Options for Coverage
Maintaining a successful community is a group effort, and well-meaning volunteers should always be encouraged to contribute to the upkeep of their own homeowners’ association. Unfortunately, accidents do happen – and with enough frequency to make having Workers Compensation Insurance a no-brainer!
Does your HOA currently carry Workers Compensation coverage? It’s time to contact a Blue Lime representative to review your current policy, or get started with obtaining the right coverage at the right price.