The process of trying to understand workers’ compensation hinders the ability of some small-business owners to obtain the best rates. Here are some tips that can help you keep insurance premiums as low as possible.

1. Work closely with your agent to properly identify and classify codes: Improper classification codes can be very costly. They’re a common problem for some small-business owners.

2. Review and update your policy on a regular basis: Take time each year to carefully review your policy and make any modifications or updates well in advance. Ask about any rate increases you don’t understand and be sure that information is up-to-date and accurately represented.

3. Keep up with premiums: Never allow your policy to be canceled, as it leaves a coverage gap that may place your company at increased risk. Expired insurance often results in higher reinstatement rates.

4. Implement a safety policy: One of the most significant contributions to workers’ compensation premiums will be your claims history. Implement a safety policy and then put it into action. Provide adequate training to new employees and perform annual safety evaluations to ensure that everyone understands the proper process and protocol for your company. Most important of all, make sure that all Occupational Safety and Health Administration and other regulatory requirements are completely followed, and carefully document all accidents, injuries or illnesses as soon as possible.

5. Avoid uninsured subcontractors: Never assume that the business or individual you are working with is properly insured. Verify it first and keep a copy of the company’s insurance policy on file.