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Applying for SI coverage
Applying for the privilege of self-insurance in Ohio

To qualify as a self-insuring (SI) employer, your organization must meet the following criteria.

  • Obtain authorization from the Ohio Secretary of State to do business in this state.
  • Have two-year's experience (a BWC policy) with the Ohio State Insurance Fund.
  • Demonstrate strong financial stability.
  • Possess the ability to administer a self-insured program.
  • Maintain an account with a financial institution in Ohio, or draw compensation checks from the same account as the payroll checks.
  • Have a BWC-certified Qualified Health Plan (QHP) or medical-management plan. For more information, refer to the Provider section or the Self-Insured Orientation Tutorial Guide.

Required forms

To apply for self-insurance, you must submit the following forms to BWC by mail or online.

Required information

An applicant must also submit the following items.

  • Five years of certified-financial statements in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). This includes a balance sheet, a profit and loss statement, auditor's opinion, and all footnotes.
  • A current organizational table showing all entities associated with the self-insurance applicant (employer).
  • The name, contact information, and qualifications for the individual that will act as the Ohio workers' compensation administrator.
  • An organizational plan for the administration of the workers' compensation law.
  • A proposed plan to inform employees of the change from a state-fund insurer to a self-insuring employer, and the procedures employees must follow when filing for compensation and benefits.
  • Secretary of State papers providing proof-of-registration to do business in Ohio.
  • Information on the company's risk and claims management procedures to establish a safe and more cost-effective workplace, including:
    • Active senior-management leadership.
    • Employee involvement.
    • Return-to-work practices.
    • Communications affecting employee safety and health.
    • Claims reporting practices.
    • Coordination of safety and health practices.
    • Written and communicated safe work practices.
    • Written safety and health policy.
    • Record keeping.
    • Training.

Required questions for public employers

Public employers must also respond to the following questions.

  • What was your bond rating as of the most recent fiscal year end?
  • Have you complied with all U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) disclosures for the last five years?
  • Have you had any local government fund distributions withheld in the last five years?
  • Have you been placed on fiscal watch or emergency in the last five years?
  • What were your unvoted debt capacities for the two most recent fiscal years?

Submitting the information

Applicants must submit their completed applications and supporting documentation 90 days in advance of the desired effective date of self-insurance.

Mail completed applications and supporting documentation to:

Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation
Self-Insured Department
30 West Spring St., 22nd Floor
Columbus, OH  43215-2256

Once we receive the application, we'll underwrite all SI application documents and financial information. No money is due at the time of application submittal.

Receiving a decision

Once we review everything, we'll issue a written decision granting or denying the employer’s self-insurance request within 90 days. If we approve, we'll:

  • Issue the employer a certificate of coverage.
  • Schedule a self-insurance orientation session for the employer. This session will further explain the self-insurance process, procedures, and administrative requirements.
  • Request the employer view the Self-Insured Orientation Tutorial Guide that provides additional information about program requirements.
  • To access the tutorial, the employer must create an account (refer to Creating an e-account) and log into the BWC Learning Center.