Accident While on a Student Placement

Reporting an Accident

To report an accident or illness that occurred during your placement hours, you are required to complete the steps below. The student, placement employer, and the placement coordinator all have duties and responsibilities to ensure that the necessary requirements are fulfilled.

In all cases, it is important to:

Your report will be reviewed and you will be contacted for follow-up (as necessary). For any further questions, please contact your placement coordinator.

Eligibility for Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU) Coverage

Coverage for workplace injuries through the Ministry of College and Universities (MCU) applies to all students in an unpaid placement who meet the eligibility criteria outlined in this document.


Student Trainees are eligible to receive MCU-paid WSIA covered benefits (WSIB) or Chubb coverage if the placement meets the following criteria:

  • The Placement is unpaid. Students are still eligible for coverage if they receive one or more of the following types of payment:
    • Social assistance benefits
    • Training allowances
    • Honoraira
    • Reimbursement of expenses
    • Stipends of any money paid to the Student Trainee by the Training Agency
  • The Placement, which may be required or optional/elective, is part of an Approved Program, includes a formal assessment component, and successful completion of the placement is recognized by the Training Agency for the purpose of the completion of the Approved Program.
  • The Placement is authorized by the Training Agency.
  • The Placement is a non-classroom activity. Any in-class portion of a training program that occurs at the Training Agency is not an Unpaid Work Placement.
  • Student Trainees who attend an unpaid placement outside of Ontario, even if the employer is based in Ontario, will have limited coverage through Chubb given that such placements are outside WSIA legislation. Student Trainees placed at uOttawa will receive limited coverage through a separate policy. The Student Trainee is advised to obtain additional insurance for these instances.


Student Trainees are ineligible for MCU coverage if:

  • Student Trainees are paid a salary
  • Student Trainees are placed with uOttawa (including unpaid research)
  • Student Trainees are participating in the classroom portion of the training program
  • International Student Trainees are attending an unpaid placement in the country of their primary residence


If the Placement Employer has WSIB coverage for their own employees, the Student Trainee will have WSIB coverage through MCU, assuming they meet the eligibility requirements. Please refer to the MCU WSIB Q&A for updates related to COVID-19.

If the Placement Employer does not have WSIB coverage for its own employees, the Student Trainee will have coverage under Chubb, through the MCU, assuming they meet the eligibility requirements. Chubb covers claims associated with accidents for students on unpaid placements but excludes coverage for students carrying out a placement from their home institution (note: uOttawa maintains a parallel policy for these circumstances). Chubb coverage does not include claims resulting from any infection, including COVID-19.  Confirmation of whether the Placement Employer has WSIB coverage will be available from your Placement Coordinator.

If the student placement meets the eligibility criteria for MCU coverage, please refer to the reporting process, which outlines the responsibilities of the Student Trainee, Placement Coordinator, Training Agency and Placement Employer, and details the steps to follow for students on unpaid work placements covered by MCU.

Process for Placement Coordinators at uOttawa

Placement Coordinators are required to:

  1. Ensure that the Placement Employer hosting Student Trainees knows whether WSIB coverage is provided for such students and is aware of the relevant reporting procedures in the event of an injury/illness. This can be achieved by having the Placement Employer review the Letter to Placement Employers prior to the placement.
  2. Ensure that Student Trainees receive training on safe work practices.
  3. Inform Student Trainees:
    • If Student Trainees are injured, contract or are exposed to an illness, they must advise their Placement Employer and Placement Coordinator and complete a report form. Note: The University is required to disclose personal information relating to the Unpaid Work Placement and any claim to MCU.
    • Student Trainees are eligible to make a claim for WSIB (or similar) coverage in the event of injury/illness incurred while in an eligible Unpaid Work Placement. This can be done by having the Student Trainee review and sign the Student Declaration of Understanding prior to the start of the student placement
  4. Coordinators must provide the following information to the Placement Employer prior to the Student Trainee’s placement:
    • Student Trainee’s full name
    • Local address and telephone number of the Student Trainee
    • Specific days when the Student Trainee will be at the Placement Employer’s worksite
    • Student Trainee’s acceptance of the conditions of the Unpaid Work Placement.
  5. For the purposes of determining insurance premiums, each year Training Agencies are required to file with MCU:
    • the total hours of Unpaid Work Placement by Approved Program with Placement Employers not covered under WSIA, and
    • the total number of Student Trainees involved

The applicable industry where the Unpaid Work Placement occurs must be specified. MCU requires this information by semester and contacts the Training Agencies shortly after the end of each semester. The Placement Coordinator must provide this information to the Office of Risk Management at the end of each semester (January, May, and September)

If a Student Trainee Sustains an Injury / Illness While Working in an Unpaid Work Placement with a Placement Employer
  1. The Student Trainee must receive first aid or other medical care, as appropriate.
  2. The Student Trainee must report the matter to the:
    • Placement Employer (e.g., their supervisor at the Unpaid Work Placement)
    • Placement Coordinator (e.g., their coordinator at uOttawa)
    • uOttawa, via the online reporting form
    • The Placement Employer and Placement Coordinator collaborate on any accommodations required.
  3. If the Student Trainee:
    • Only required first aid:
      • Incidents involving first-aid only do not need to be reported to WSIB but must be recorded and kept on file by the Training Agency in the event a report is required in the future.
    • Sought medical care, missed time from their placement, required a modified work schedule for more than 7 days:
      • For WSIB-covered employers:
        • The Placement Employer partially completes and sends to the Placement Coordinator the:
      • For non WSIB-covered employers:
        • The Placement Employer partially completes and sends to the Placement Coordinator the:
  4. The Placement Employer provides all forms to the Placement Coordinator within 3 days of the incident.
  5. The Placement Coordinator provides all forms to the Office of Risk Management.

All parties shall comply with Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) and the Ontario Human Rights Code.


Chubb Insurance of Canada – Chubb Insurance is a private insurance company retained by the Government of Ontario and the University of Ottawa for specific circumstances where WSIB coverage is not available.

Medical care – care provided to a Student Trainee that:

  • requires medical attention by a health care professional for which there is a fee for service (this could include a physician, dentist, chiropractor, hospital, etc.)
  • results in lost time from work beyond the date of the work-related accident
  • requires modified work for more than seven calendar days, and/or
  • results in exposure to communicable disease

Placement Coordinator – the uOttawa employee who places the student with the Placement Employer.

Placement Employer – the employer with whom the Student Trainee is placed by a Training Agency to receive training as part of the requirements of his or her Approved Program.

Student Trainee – a student engaged in an Unpaid Work Placement with a Placement Employer.

Training Agency – a postsecondary educational institution. The University of Ottawa is an approved Training Agency. For the purposes of Unpaid Student Placements and this process document, the Placement Coordinator is the representative of the Training Agency.

Unpaid Work Placement – an unpaid work placement that is required as part of an Approved Program offered by a Training Agency. Students receiving social assistance benefits, training allowances, honoraria, reimbursement of expenses and stipend paid to the Trainee are still considered on an Unpaid Work Placement.

Back to top