The technical answer is NO. The better answer is YES. If you are in business, you should obtain a Workers’ Compensation policy to protect your stuff. Having cool stuff and getting newer and cooler stuff is generally why we follow the Self-Employment path. When people take your cool stuff, it will make you sad. If you have an Uninsured Injury, you are at risk of losing all your cool stuff. I tell my clients “If you cannot afford WC Insurance for your Business, you cannot afford to be in Business.”
Betty Boop has an AVON® business, and conducts all the sales, deliveries, billing, and packing herself. Betty does not need WC Insurance to cover herself. However, if Betty has the next-door-neighbor drop catalogs off on doorsteps 4 hours each weekend, she WILL need a WC Policy when Texting Tim walks into a ditch.
Bob the Builder is a Licensed California Contractor. If Bob does all the plumbing work himself, or builds every wall himself, he can register as EXEMPT, and does not need a WC Policy for himself. However, if Bob ever hires a Subcontractor to do any part of the job, Bob SHOULD get a Workers’ Compensation Policy. If his Subcontractor hires another Subcontractor, or anyone hires a Day Laborer anywhere down the line, Bob is responsible for the downstream group. Keeping track of Subcontractors is hard, but keeping track of the Subcontractors of your Subcontractor’s Subcontractors is near impossible. One Unlicensed Contractor, Uninsured Contractor, or Day Laborer is all it takes to lose everything when Clumsy Ken rolls off the roof and suffers life-threatening injuries. Since roughly 60% of Licensed Contractors register as EXEMPT in Southern California, many Licensed Contractors are begging to own an Uninsured Workers’ Compensation injury. A Workers’ Compensation policy can save that grief.