Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
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If he has less than five employees he is not required to have worker comp.That said if anybody gets hurt they can sue you as well as employer. Honestly you might want to seek out another painter that carries WC because otherwise there is risk to you and your homeowners coverage.WC here protects you if they get hurt on your property you know they have recourse other than you.You are basically assuming the risk here knowing they don't have such coverage.
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