Brewery Workers’ Comp Classification Clarification
The Classification and Rating Committee of the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California (WCIRB) met recently and reviewed the workers’ compensation classification assignments for brewery and winery employers. Currently, breweries are assigned to classification 2121 – Breweries – including bottling or canning and restaurants or taverns are assigned to classification 9079(1) – Restaurants or Taverns – all employees – including musicians and entertainers. Each class code is assigned a specific rate per $100 of payroll and rates are based on a number of factors, including the workers’ compensation loss experience for the industry as a whole.
In addition to classification 2121, there are ancillary class codes that may apply to a brewery. The committee discussed how best to clarify the procedures for classifying brewery employees into the main and ancillary class codes, specifically those employees that provide facility tours and product tastings, sell products to retail customers, or prepare and serve alcoholic beverages or hot food.
Everyone wants to avoid a surprise bill at the end of the year for additional premium because their brewery was misclassified by the insurer or broker. This clarification was provided to prevent those issues.
The proposed clarifications include:
- Tasting room/taproom employees are properly assigned to the restaurant classification, 9079(1), if 50% or more of the gross receipts of the tasting room/taproom are for alcohol consumed on the premises, even if no food is sold. If more than 50% of the gross receipts of the tasting room/taproom are for alcohol consumed off the premises, classification 8060 – Stores – wine, beer, or spirits – retail may apply.
- Brewery employees engaged in facility tours, including tours where product tasting samples are provided to customers, are properly assigned to the brewery classification, 2121.
- Brewery operations at a restaurant where the beer brewed on-site is primarily sold to restaurant customers for on-site consumption are properly assigned to the restaurant classification, 9079(1). If the beer brewed on-site is primarily sold for off-site consumption, the brewery classification 2121, will apply to the brewery operations.
Further details regarding all of the changes reviewed by the WCIRB can be found here.
For additional information on how this may affect your brewery, please contact Phillip Arrington at firstname.lastname@example.org or (619) 254-0909.