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Workers' compensation — Texas

Workers’ compensation is basically a “no fault” system of paying injured workers benefits for accidents that occur on the job. Accordingly, the employer must realize that the actual manner in which the accident occurred is often not that important (except for intentional injuries and injuries resulting from the use of illegal drugs or alcohol). In other words, it generally makes no difference that the employee was injured because of his or her own negligence or because of the negligence of the employer.


Unlike most states, the workers’ compensation system in Texas is elective and not mandatory. An employer may choose to forgo workers’ compensation insurance altogether and employees may also elect to waive coverage at the time of hire. If a company does subscribe to workers’ compensation insurance, all employees are covered. As explained below, independent contractors are not covered.

Independent contractor

The employer is not responsible to secure workers’ compensation coverage for either the independent contractor or for employees of independent contractors. Whether an independent contractor relationship exists is a factual consideration and depends upon whether: