Contractors at Risk for Subs’ Failures in Workers’ Comp Bill

03.06.2015
Issues & Policies

General contractors and any other subcontractors working for them on a project would be liable if a subcontractor fails to pay wages or workers’ compensation benefits, under a Labor Committee proposal (SB 1039) given a public hearing this week.
Punishing anyone other than the party that’s directly responsible is unjust and unwarranted. State law already requires all employers, under threat of penalties, to pay fair wages and carry appropriate insurance.
Adding another layer of responsibility and enforcement would be excessive and unnecessary.
The bill puts an unfair burden not only on general contractors, but on anyone serving as a prime contractor and overseeing a subcontractor.
General contractors are obligated to oversee a safe and legal jobsite, but there is only so much that’s within their control and for which they realistically should be held responsible.
For workers’ compensation, the only business able to insure their workers is the business that hires them. The direct employer is solely responsible for ensuring that workers have access to the appropriate insurances needed to protect them and their family.
SB 1039 also would burden the state Workers’ Compensation Commission that would have to deal with every party on a construction project site instead of a just the principle employer accused of the failure to provide workers’ compensation benefits.
CBIA urges the Labor Committee to reject SB 1039 as unfair, unnecessary, and unlikely to improve Connecticut’s climate for job creators.
For more information, contact CBIA’s Louise DiCocco at 860 244.1169 or louise.dicocco@cbia.com.

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