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Volunteers

There are three groups of volunteers in Indiana that are each covered in a different manner.;

There are three groups of volunteers in Indiana that are each covered in a different manner. The three groups are rostered volunteers, volunteer firefighters, and all other volunteers.


Rostered Volunteers
Under Indiana law, a government unit may elect to cover volunteers for medical benefits. Per Indiana Code 22-3-2-2.1, the unit (county, municipality, or township) must establish a roster (list of the volunteers) to be covered. The law excludes volunteer firefighters, emergency medical technicians, and inmates as rostered volunteers.

The Indiana Code is available on the State of Indiana website at this address: http://www.state.in.us/legislative/ic/code/.

Rostered volunteers are assigned to Indiana state special code 7698 "Rostered volunteers - medical only & drivers." This code was created March 1, 1994. For governmental units in Indiana, this code is assigned to volunteers. This procedure is an exception to the generic rules on volunteers found in the Basic Manual, Rule 2.J. (old Rule IX.D.3.), which says to assign volunteers to the code that applies to other workers involved in the same operations.

This coverage is not automatic, so to validate the election, we suggest that the carrier:
  • add code 7698 to the class schedule with estimated remuneration
  • attach the Sole Proprietors, Partners, Officers, Others Coverage Endorsement (WC 00 03 10) and designate those to be covered as "rostered volunteers"

Volunteer Firefighters
Volunteer firefighters and emergency medical technicians are covered under the statute for medical and burial expense benefits (IC 36-8-12-10).
 
A volunteer fire company (VFC) is properly classified under code 7711—Firefighters & Drivers—Volunteer.  Please refer to the "Volunteer Firefighters" document for more information.

 

All Other Volunteers
Other volunteers can be covered for benefits, as an optional (voluntary) coverage. We suggest that the carrier providing the coverage attach the Voluntary Compensation & Employers Liability Endorsement (WC 00 03 11 A). We do not have a position if benefits paid to a volunteer would be: [1] both indemnity and medical, or [2] medical only because a volunteer receives no remuneration. The endorsement would apparently cover either scenario since the endorsement is actually an optional or "voluntary" agreement for coverage between the carrier and insured which is outside of the workers compensation law. And because the law does not require workers compensation for volunteers, coverage could not be provided through the assigned risk plan.

Premium Determination
Except as otherwise provided, premium must be determined on the basis of the payroll normally received by and the classification assigned to nonvolunteer employees doing the same or similar work, as directed by Basic Manual, Rule 2.J (old Rule IX.D.2.).

Voluntary Compensation & Employers Liability Endorsement (WC 00 03 11 A)
The endorsement sets up an optional or "voluntary" agreement for coverage between the carrier and insured which is outside of the workers compensation law. So, the endorsement could cover volunteers or any other person or group of people that fall outside the normal statutory coverage.

The voluntary compensation benefits made available by the endorsement are available only if the injured worker releases the employer in writing from all responsibility for the injury. If the employee refuses, there is no coverage under the endorsement. If the employee pursues a tort action against the employer, it would be addressed by the employers liability part of the policy or the entities other insurance coverage, such as general liability.
 
 
Coverages Other Than Workers Compensation
If an entity desires to protect volunteers, it can increase medical payment limits on a commercial general liability (CGL) policy, or purchase a group accident/disability policy, or accident and health (A&H) policy.
 

Related Files

The material in this document has been prepared and shared for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice on any particular situation.