FAQ: Rejection of Workers' Compensation or Employers' Liability Coverage Under Iowa Code Section 87.22

Overview

Under Iowa Code section 87.22, the president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer of a corporation (other than a family farm corporation) may make a rejection of workers’ compensation or employers’ liability coverage (rejection of coverage). 

This page has information about making a rejection of coverage. 

For more resources relating to rejections of coverage, click here.

Iowa Workers' Compensation Law

Nothing on this page supersedes the Iowa Code, Iowa Administrative Code (IAC), orders and decisions of the Iowa Workers' Compensation Commissioner, or decisions of Iowa courts. For more information about Iowa workers' compensation law, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) 

Employees of what type of entity may reject coverage?

Only officers of corporations (other than a family farm corporation) may reject coverage. 

Employees of no other type of entity may reject coverage.

Return To Table of Contents

which employees of a corporation may reject coverage? 

Only the following officers of a corporation (other than a family farm corporation) may reject coverage:

  • President
  • Vice president
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer

No more than four of these officers of a corporation may make a rejection of coverage.

No other employees of a corporation may make a rejection of coverage under the law.

Return To Table of Contents

 What is a rejection of coverage? 

It rejects the coverage of Iowa Code chapters 85, 85A, and 85B relating to workers’ compensation and employers’ liability coverage for bodily injuries or death sustained by the rejecting officer arising out of and in the course of the officer’s employment with the corporation.

It is not a waiver of any rights or remedies available to the officer or others on the officer’s behalf in a civil action related to personal injuries sustained by the officer arising out of and in the course of the officer’s employment with the corporation.

Return To Table of Contents

If the corporation has a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy, how does an officer reject coverage? 

If the corporation has been issued a workers’ compensation or employers’ liability policy, an officer of the corporation may reject coverage by signing and attaching to the liability policy a written rejection.

If you have questions about rejecting coverage by attaching a written rejection to the corporation's workers' compensation or employers' liability policy, you should contact your attorney and/or your insurance carrier. For information about legal advice and referrals, click here.

You do not file a rejection of coverage with DWC if the corporation has a workers' compensation or employers' liability policy.

Return To Table of Contents

If the corporation does not have a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy, how does an officer reject coverage?

If the corporation does not have a workers’ compensation or employers’ liability policy, then an officer of the corporation may reject coverage by completing, signing, and filing the completed and signed rejection of coverage form with DWC.

The signing of the rejection of coverage form must be witnessed by two disinterested witnesses.

To view, complete, sign, and file the DWC rejection of coverage form, click here.

Return To Table of Contents

Who may serve as a witness to the signing of a rejection of coverage form filed with DWC?

Any two disinterested individuals who are not, formally or informally, affiliated with the corporation.

Return To Table of Contents

When is a rejection of coverage unenforceable?

A rejection of coverage is unenforceable when it is required as a condition of the corporate officer's employment.

Return To Table of Contents

Can a corporate officer terminate a rejection of coverage that was filed with DWC?

Yes, a corporate officer may terminate a rejection of coverage filed with DWC.

For more information about terminating a rejection of coverage filed with DWC, click here.

Return To Table of Contents

Is a rejection of coverage filed with DWC a public record? 

Yes, a rejection of coverage is a public record. DWC is required by law to keep a list of rejections of coverage.

To view the online list of rejections of coverage filed with DWC, click here.

Return To Table of Contents

What is the difference between a rejection of coverage and a nonelection of coverage?

Whether an employee is eligible under the law to make a rejection of coverage or nonelection of coverage depends on the type of business entity and type of employee.

Rejection of Coverage

Up to four corporate officers of the president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer of a corporation (but not a family farm corporation) may make a rejection of coverage.

No other type of employee for any other type of business entity may make a rejection of coverage.

Noneleection of Coverage

A proprietor, limited liability company member, limited liability partner, or partner may make a nonelection of workers' compensation or employers' liability coverage (nonelection of coverage).

No other type of employee may make a nonelection of coverage.

For more information about nonelections of coverage, click here.

Return To Table of Contents

HYpotheticals

The following are hypotheticals intended to illustrate common scenarios relating to rejections of coverage under Iowa Code section 87.22.

No. 1

Riley is the president of a corporation that is not a family farm corporation. The corporation does not have a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy. No other officers of the corporation have made a rejection of coverage. Riley wants to make a rejection of coverage.

To make a rejection of coverage, Riley must:

  1. Go to the DWC website and complete the online rejection of coverage form.
  2. Two disinterested witnesses, who have no formal or informal affiliation with the corporation, must watch Riley electronically sign the online form.
  3. An authorized representative of the corporation must also complete the online rejection of coverage form. (Because Riley is the president of the corporation, Riley may be an authorized representative of the corporation.)
  4. Two disinterested witnesses, who have no formal or informal affiliation with the corporation, must watch the authorized representative sign the online form.

After the filing of the online rejection of coverage form with DWC:

  • Riley and the authorized representative of the corporation (if someone other than Riley) will receive a verification email with the information provided on the form.
  • The online DWC list of rejections of coverage will show Riley's rejection of coverage.

No. 2

Peyton is the president of a corporation that is not a family farm corporation. The corporation has a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy. Peyton wants to make a rejection of coverage. Peyton has questions about how to make a rejection of coverage.

Because the corporation has a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy, Peyton:

  • Does not file a rejection of coverage with DWC. 
  • Should not contact DWC with questions because DWC cannot give legal advice or make referrals to attorneys. For information about legal advice and referrals, click here.
  • Should contact an attorney or the insurance carrier with his questions about how to make a rejection of coverage.

No. 3

Jordan is the president of a corporation that is not a family farm corporation. The corporation does not have a workers' compensation or employers' liability policy. Jordan would like to make a rejection of coverage.

Jordan has completed the online rejection of coverage form. Jordan needs two witnesses to her signing the form.

One of the crews of subcontractors that contracts with the corporation for work is at the office. Jordan cannot have any of the members of the crew of subcontractors be a witness because they have a financial relationship with the corporation. They do not qualify as disinterested individuals without a formal or informal affiliation with the corporation.

No. 4

Sawyer is a proprietor. The business is not a corporation. Sawyer's business has no other employees. Sawyer's business does not have a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy.

Sawyer's insurance carrier advises Sawyer to take out a workers' compensation or employers' liability insurance policy in case a work injury occurs. Sawyer does not want to pay for such a policy. Sawyer's friend is the president of a corporation, who tells Sawyer that the officers of the corporation made a rejection of coverage. The friend suggests that Sawyer make a rejection of coverage. 

Sawyer cannot make a rejection of coverage because Sawyer is not an officer of a corporation that is not a family farm corporation. Because Sawyer is a proprietor, Sawyer may make a nonelection of coverage.

For information about nonelections of coverage, click here.

No. 5

Blake is the vice president of a corporation. The president of the corporation tells Blake to make a rejection of coverage or be fired. Blake makes a rejection of coverage because the president made it a requirement of employment.

The rejection of coverage that Blake made is not enforceable because the corporation required it as a condition of employment.

Return To Table of Contents

Access: