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Iowa Workers Compensation Laws

Workers compensation laws, rules and policy information for the State of Iowa

Related Pages:  More About Iowa Rules


State:  Iowa

Updated:  01-10-2017

Authority/State Rating Bureau:  NCCI

National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI)
901 Peninsula Corporate Circle
Boca Raton, FL 33487-1362
800-622-4123


Compulsory:  Yes

Private Insurance:  Allowed

Self-Insurance:  Allowed

State Fund:  None

Assigned Risk:  Administered by NCCI



Numerical Exceptions:  None, however refer to special notes below.

Individual Waivers Allowed:  Yes, limited to Corporate Officers.

Small Deductible Program:
Sole Proprietor:  Excluded from coverage/may elect to be included/see special notes / If included in coverage the rating payroll used is a minimum of $350 and a maximum of $2,900 per week as of 1-1-2012, $350 / $3,000 as of 1-1-2013, $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2014. $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2015. $400 / $3,300 as of 1-1-2016. $400 / $3,400 as of 1-1-2017.

Partners:  Excluded from coverage/may elect to be included / see special notes / If included in coverage the rating payroll used is a minimum of $350 and a maximum of $2,900 per week as of 1-1-2012, $350 / $3,000 as of 1-1-2013, $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2014. $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2015. $400 / $3,300 as of 1-1-2016. $400 / $3,400 as of 1-1-2017.

Corporate Officers:  Included in coverage/may elect to be exempt/ see special notes. If included in coverage the rating payroll used is a minimum of $350 and a maximum of $2,900 per week as of 1-1-2012, $350 / $3,000 as of 1-1-2013, $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2014. $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2015. $400 / $3,300 as of 1-1-2016. $400 / $3,400 as of 1-1-2017.

LLC Members:  Excluded from coverage/may elect to be included. If included in coverage the rating payroll used is a minimum of $350 and a maximum of $2,900 per week as of 1-1-2012, $350 / $3,000 as of 1-1-2013, $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2014. $400 / $3,100 as of 1-1-2015. $400 / $3,300 as of 1-1-2016. $400 / $3,400 as of 1-1-2017.

Iowa Exclusion From Coverage Form - Corporate Officer:  For 14-0061 Iowa Corporate Officer Exclusion Form

A Note About Forms:  Be sure to check with your insurance company for any additional forms they may use for exclusion or inclusion of coverage.



Contractors:  Independent contractors are not considered employees however they must meet qualifying requirements.

SPECIAL ALERT:  We've recently discovered a mistake found in the Iowa Division of Workers Compensation publication entitled "Guide to Workers' Compensation" the sixth edition - 2005 which indicates on page 1, item 3, under "who is eligible to receive workers comp benefits" that "the following are exempt or non-covered employees:(85.1):

  • Item 3. "the spouse of the employer, parents, brothers, sisters, children and stepchildren of either the employer or the spouse of the employer, and the spouses of the brothers, sisters, children, and stepchildren of either the employer or the spouse of the employer."

There appears nothing in Item 3 of this guide that relates item 3 specifically to agriculture operations which in turn seems to imply that this applies to all business operations. This is incorrect according the Iowa Workers Comp Code. So Item 3, special list of exempt employees, as shown above ONLY applies to agricultural type operations and has been verified with the Iowa Division of Workers Compensation.


Special Notes:  There are a few classifications of employees who are exempt from the law. The following are exempt or non-covered employees: (85.1)
  • Domestic and casual employees who earn less than $1,500 from their employer during the 12 consecutive months prior to the injury.
  • Agricultural employees whose employer has a cash payroll of less than $2,500 in the calendar year preceding the injury.
  • For agricultural operations only, the spouse of the employer, parents, brothers, sisters, children and stepchildren of either the employer or the spouse of the employer, and the spouses of the brothers, sisters, children, and stepchildren of either the employer or the spouse of the employer. According to the Iowa Department of Workers Compensation this rule does not apply to normal business operations, only agricultural operations.
  • Exchange labor in agricultural employment.
  • The president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer of a family farm corporation and their spouses, and the parents, brothers, sisters, children, stepchildren, and their spouses of either the officers or their spouses.
  • Police officers and fire fighters who are entitled to benefits under pension fund established by Iowa Code chapters 410 and 411.
  • A proprietor or partner who is actively engaged in the proprietor’s or partner’s business on a substantially full-time basis.
  • The president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer of a corporation (other than a family farm corporation), not to exceed four officers per corporation, may elect not to be covered under the workers’ compensation law. In order for the rejection of coverage to be valid, a REJECTION OF WORKERS’ COMPENSATION OR EMPLOYER’S LIABILITY COVERAGE (a form available through the Workers’ Compensation Commissioner’s office) must be completed.
  • Employees who are entitled to benefits under any rule of liability or method of compensation, for employees, established by the Congress of the United States.
  • Members of a limited liability company.
  • As with all the information we provide about state workers comp rules please verify the accuracy of this information with the Iowa Department of Workers Compensation.

    Experience Rating Eligibility:  Employers in Iowa receive an experience modification rate or EMR when they meet one of these triggers:
    • $7,500 in policy premium is generated during the last year or last two years.
    • $3,750 is the average policy premium generated for more than two years.


    Iowa Subrogation of Workers Compensation:  You'll find that subrogation of workers comp is addressed in Iowa State Statute 85.22. This statute is available for online viewing and is entitled "Liability of others - subrogation." The link we provide below should take you directly to this chapter and section. Iowa Subrogation Statute

    Treatment of Iowa Workers Working In Other States; Other States Workers Working In Iowa, Extraterritorial, Reciprocity and Non-Compliance:  If Iowa workers are working temporarily in another state, then workers compensation coverage for that worker is governed by the extraterritorial provisions found in Iowa statutes. When allowed, extraterritorial provisions allow benefits for an injured worker to apply as if the worker was in their primary state. Not all states provide Extraterritorial Provisions. It's reciprocity that governs coverage for a worker from another state who is working temporarily in Iowa. You will find that Iowa will recognize other jurisdictional coverage only for the purpose of benefit credit. Compliance of workers compensation laws varies from state to state and it is important for an employer with workers performing duties in other states to be aware of the specific state rules that govern their coverage. We've provided the below general information about extraterritorial and reciprocity as a basic guide. Please contact your state authority with your specific questions concerning this topic!

    • Extraterritorial: 
      • Provisions: Yes
      • Duration: Not Specific
    • Reciprocity: 
      • Allowed: No
    • Specific Statute:  Iowa 85.71;
    • Specific Statute:  Iowa 85.72 - Benefits Credit;
    • For More Information Contact:  Iowa Division of Workers Compensation as shown below.




    Regulated By: 

    Division of Workers' Compensation
    1000 East Grand Avenue
    Des Moines, IA 50319
    Phone: (515) 281-5387 or (800) 562-4692
    FAX: (515) 281-6501
    http://www.iowaworkforce.org/wc/

    Workers Compensation Statute: 

    The Iowa Workers' Compensation Laws under Iowa Code Chapters: 85, 85A, 85B, 86 & 87. The Iowa General Assembly posts the statutes on their web site. You may access the Iowa Code at the following web address:

    Workers Compensation Statute for Iowa


    Didn't find what you're looking for? Search here for more about Iowa rules: 



    Information on this page is provided only as a reference. While we strive to mantain accurate information on this site please realize workers compensation laws are complicated and subject to change at any time. No warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of this information is provided or to be implied. You must verify this data before use with the individual governing authority for this state. If you need help with a workers compensation problem or have a specific situation or question please contact our office. Otherwise please consult your states governing authority or an attorney in your state of residency for assistance.





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