What’s the CSST’s role?
The CSST is the government insurer for Québec’s workers and employers. Under this mandatory insurance plan, victims of work-related accidents or diseases are compensated.
- To victims of a work-related accident or disease, the CSST provides financial support and access to medical aid and rehabilitation services;
- To employers, who finance the plan by paying premiums (assessments), the CSST provides assistance so that they can eliminate dangers in the workplace.
The CSST is also concerned with the prevention of work-related accidents and diseases. It promotes various measures aimed at creating safe workplaces and supports employers in applying those measures.
Questions and answers
I have a job. Am I covered in the event of a work-related accident?
Yes. Once you’re being paid wages by an employer, whether you’re working full-time or part-time, whether you’re unionized or not, you’re automatically insured by the CSST from your first day of work. There’s no minimum age to be covered. The insurance doesn’t cost you a cent and you don’t have to register anywhere to be entitled to it.
Am I covered even if my employer hasn’t paid its premiums?
Yes. You’re still fully covered by the CSST.
Do I have to be unionized to be covered by the CSST?
No. You don’t have to be unionized to be covered. Once you’re getting wages from an employer, you’re automatically insured by the CSST if you have a work-related accident or contract an occupational disease.
How are indemnities calculated and paid?
For the actual day of the accident, your employer must pay you your full wages as if you had worked the whole day. For the first 14 days after your accident, your employer must pay you 90% of your net wages for every day or partial day that you would normally have worked. It must apply for reimbursement from the CSST.
From the 15th day, the CSST will pay you an indemnity equal to 90% of your net income. If you’re a worker pursuing studies, special rules may apply.
Are all workers covered by the CSST?
No. Self-employed workers (called «independent operators»), domestics, volunteers, professional athletes and persons hired by an individual to care for another person (a child, an invalid, a handicapped person or an elderly person) are not covered by the CSST. However, independent operators and domestics may be entitled to personal coverage under certain conditions.
I’m looking after my neighbour’s children. Am I covered by the CSST?
No. If you’re taking care of children, an invalid or an elderly person, or if you do housework for an individual, you’re not considered hired by an employer and therefore you’re not covered if you have a work-related accident. If you’re given accommodation to do your job, you’re regarded as a domestic and in that case, you could obtain legal coverage by making a written application to the CSST and paying the prescribed premium.
I deliver newspapers in my neighbourhood. Am I covered?
Yes. If you deliver daily or weekly newspapers, you’re considered to be a paper carrier, and as such, you’d be entitled to indemnities in the event of a work-related accident or disease. Your indemnities would be calculated according to CSST rules, but paid by your employer. Your employer must take out insurance for that purpose.
If you deliver pamphlets, circulars or phone books, you’re not considered a paper carrier, but rather the same as any other worker, and therefore covered by the CSST.
I do volunteer work. Am I covered by the CSST?
You’re covered by the CSST during your volunteer working hours only if the organization you work for has previously applied for coverage with the CSST. You should check this with your employer.
I work at a farm in the summer. Am I covered by the CSST?
Yes. You’re covered if you receive wages from a farmer operating a farming business in Québec.
During the summer, I pick fruit in British Colombia. Am I covered by the CSST?
No. If you work for an employer outside Québec that does not have an establishment or office in Québec, you’re not covered by the CSST. However, you are covered by a body similar to the CSST in the province that you’re working in. You should find out about this from the body of that province or from your employer.
In the summer, I do painting, lawn-mowing and window-washing for residents in my town. Am I covered by the CSST?
No. Because you work for yourself, you're regarded as an «independent operator» and therefore not covered by the CSST. But you could be covered if you apply for coverage and pay the prescribed premium.