OhioBWC - Basics:  Applying for Workers' Compensation Coverage

Applying for Workers' Compensation Coverage

Private employers may obtain coverage by submitting a completed coverage application, Application for Ohio Workers Compensation Coverage (U-3) and a $120 security deposit.

Public employers are unique in that they do not file for coverage in the same manner as private employers, such as filing a U-3 application. They also do not pay a premium security deposit. To obtain coverage they must provide a Resolution or a copy of meeting minutes, signed by an Appointing Authority.

Completing the U-3
When completing the application, it's important to:
  • Provide your legal name;
  • Furnish your federal identification number, or if operating as a sole proprietor, provide your Social Security number;
  • Provide your street address and P.O. Box number;
  • Furnish as many details as possible when describing the type of work performed and equipment used. This helps BWC to properly classify your operations.
Security deposit
The initial deposit ranges from $120 to $1,000, depending on the estimated payroll entered on the Application For Coverage.

Payment method
The $120 security deposit can be paid in one of four ways:
  • Mail a check or money order with the U-3 to:
    The Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation
    Attn: Cash Control Unit
    P. O. Box 15698
    Columbus, Ohio 43215-0698;
  • Deliver payment to any of the BWC Customer Service Offices located throughout the state;
  • Pay online with a credit card (Visa, American Express or Mastercard) if completing the U-3 application online.
  • Authorize a payment from your checking or savings account online.
Certificate of Premium Payment

Workers' compensation coverage becomes effective when BWC receives the completed U-3 application and a $120 minimum-security deposit. Private employers submitting their application online may choose to print a temporary Certificate of Premium Payment. Approximately 30 days after BWC receives the application with the required deposit, we issue a Certificate of Premium Payment notifying the employer of the seven-digit policy number. This policy number should be included on all correspondence and checks sent to BWC. The Certificate of Premium Payment will begin with the effective date of coverage through the end of the billing period, at which time the semiannual payroll report and premium will be due. (Payroll reports with an end date of Dec. 31 are due the last day of February of the following year and payroll reports with an end date of June 30 are due the last day of August.) Along with the certificate the employer will also receive a new employer kit, which is also available online. We will send an invoice noting the difference between the initial $120 deposit and the additional deposit owed under separate cover.
New employer kit