OhioBWC - Basics:  Who are State fund employers?

Who are state-fund employers?

Ohio's employers are either state-fund or self-insured. If you do not know if your employer is a state-fund or self-insured employer, you need to ask your employer.

State-fund employers - State-fund employers pay an insurance premium to BWC which is placed in the state fund.
Ohio law requires employers with one or more employees to obtain workers’ compensation coverage or be granted the privilege of self-insurance for liabilities associated with work-related accidents or occupational diseases.

State-fund employers primarily are either a public or a private employer who pays premiums for workers’ compensation coverage, the premiums are placed in the state fund. Two-thirds of Ohio's employers are either public or private employers and are covered by the state fund.

  • Private employers can be private businesses, sole proprietors, partnerships, corporations, associations or limited liability companies.
  • Public employers can be either a county or state agency. A public employer is a governing unit that provides service to the public.

Black lung employers are coal mine operators.
Black lung claims are funded by the federal government; however, the Ohio workers’ compensation system is responsible for their determination and on-going management.

Marine fund employers are those who engage in maritime commerce on Ohio navigable waterways.
BWC is authorized by the U.S. Department of Labor to create and administer a workers’ compensation program under the federal Longshoreman and Harbor Workers Act. BWC’s program is called the Marine Industrial Fund.

Employers may not exclude employees from workers' compensation benefits based on age, citizenship, gender, race or relationship. According to the law, employees receive pay from employers for services performed when the relationship between the employer and employee is created by a contract of hire — written, oral, expressed or implied.

BWC considers corporate officers employees for the purpose of workers' compensation. Corporate officers must report their pay subject to the weekly minimum and maximum limits posted annually. BWC changes the minimum and maximum reportable remuneration yearly based on the statewide average weekly wage.

The law also requires independent contractors and subcontractors to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees.

Workers’ compensation coverage is an option that can be purchased for ministers, officers of family farm corporations, and sole proprietors and partners.