Newer contractors, laborers account for most Workers Compensation claims

Updated: Oct 29

Plumbers and electricians have the most workers’ comp claims among all trades, according to AmTrust Financial.


By Steve Hallo

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“The most valuable asset of any company is its employees, and with the current labor shortage, employers need to be armed with recent data to improve workplace safety and help reduce injuries,” Matt Zender, senior vice president of workers’ compensation strategy at AmTrust, said.(Photo by Getty Images)

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Building and construction firms that have been in business for four years or less account for three-quarters of workers’ comp claims in the contractor sector, according to AmTrust Financial.


Additionally, newer employees tend to see the most injuries in the construction field. Tradespeople on the job for a year or less accounted for 33% of workers’ comp claims. As years of experience build, the frequency of injuries drop, AmTrust found, with workers that have been on the job for five years seeing the fewest claims.


“The most valuable asset of any company is its employees, and with the current labor shortage, employers need to be armed with recent data to improve workplace safety and help reduce injuries,” Matt Zender, senior vice president of workers’ compensation strategy at AmTrust, said in a release. “Our new risk report for contractors brings awareness to common injuries, allowing small businesses to better mitigate losses and help keep their workforce healthy and productive.”


Much like hurricanes, injury frequency on construction sites tends to intensify during warm weather. August see about 11% of reported claims, twice as many as experienced in December, according to the insurance carrier.


Similarly, warm weather locations see more worksite accidents and injuries. California and Florida, which make up almost half of all contractor losses for AmTrust, see claims frequencies 7% and 34%, respectively, above the national average. Claims in Arizona are 42% above the U.S. average. Conversely, AmTrust reported New York sees a claims frequency 48% below the average.


Plumbing sees the most claims among the trades, accounting for 28% of filings, AmTrust reported. Strains and falls were the most common injuries, respectively. Electricians saw the second most claims, with falls and strains again the leading causes of injury.


It is not just plumbing and electric fields, falls and strains are the most common worksite injuries across trades. Specifically falling off ladders and straining while lifting something, according to the insurance company. In addition to being among the most common injuries, falls also require the longest recovery times.


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