The workers compensation system is an injury and disability insurance system for workers and employers, paid for by employers.
The present day workers compensation is based on the following key principles:
- no-fault compensation for injured workers and their dependants – Benefits are paid to injured workers whether or not negligence on the part of the worker or employer contributed to the injury.
- security of benefits – Injured workers receive income replacement based on a calculation of earnings lost as a result of the workplace injury or illness, whether or not the employer has paid premiums.
- collective liability – All participating employers share responsibility for the costs of the system. Compensation is paid by the WCB and does not depend on an employer's ability to pay WCB premiums.
- immunity of employers and workers from civil suits – Injured workers gave up their right of legal action in return for guaranteed benefits and employers agreed to pay for the system in exchange for protection against lawsuits. This historic compromise allows workers compensation matters to be handled quickly and without the costs, uncertainty and formality of court proceedings.
- administration by an independent board – The WCB is responsible for the collection of employer contributions and the provision of benefits to injured workers and their dependants.
- prevention of workplace injuries and diseases – Workplaces benefit from the efforts of SAFE Work Manitoba, a separate arm of the WCB to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses from occurring.
- timely and safe return to health and work – Injured workers receive optimum recovery through expeditious and effective healthcare treatment and return to work in a timely and safe manner under the leadership of the WCB in partnership with employers, workers and healthcare providers.