If you’ve been injured in a workplace accident in the state of New York, you may likely qualify for workers compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, meaning workers can collect benefits regardless of who was to blame for the accident. Workers can also recover compensation for illnesses that are the result of work, such as occupational disease, or chronic injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome or other repetitive stress injuries.
Do All New York Employees Have Workers Compensation Benefits?
Virtually all New York employers are required to carry workers compensation insurance which covers benefits in the event of a workplace accident or illness. There are a few exceptions, such as sole proprietors and businesses where the only employees are the owners. Employers are also required to conspicuously post a notice that indicates their workers’ compensation insurance coverage, detailing the name, address, and phone number of the insurer and the employer’s policy number.
Requirements for a Workers Comp Claim in New York
In order to qualify for workers compensation benefits in NYS, your illness or injury must be related to your job and you must be able to prove it.
There are three common types of job-related illnesses and injuries that qualify for workers compensation benefits:
- Accident-related injuries. These often involve equipment or heavy machinery, injuries suffered at construction sites or in warehouses and factories. Examples of workplace accidents are also slip and fall incidents or even vehicle accidents if they happen while working. Any injury sustained because of an accident at work that requires you to seek medical treatment and/or miss work because of it may qualify for workers compensation.
- Chronic conditions from strains, sprains, and repetitive stress. Many workers perform the same movements throughout the day – picking up and putting down heavy materials, and reaching to high areas. These repetitive motions can cause overuse injuries over time.
- Illnesses that could include diseases of the lungs, skin, gastrointestinal tract, and other systems; cancers related to harmful materials; and toxic exposure.
Regardless of what type of injury or illness you may have, you must be able to prove that it was work that caused the injury or illness.
Workers Comp Benefits in New York
Workers’ compensation is intended to provide several benefits to injured workers who have suffered from a work-related accident or an occupational disease. Medical benefits, such as payment of hospital and medical bills, as well as the loss of income during any period in which an employee is disabled. These benefits may be temporary or permanent, depending on the injury, and may include a full benefit amount or a partial benefit amount. In New York, there is a maximum weekly benefit amount available for lost wages, which was $1063 per week in 2022.
If you suffer any type of on the job injury, there are some key steps you can take to protect your legal rights in New York. Make sure to get medical treatment immediately and report the accident and your injuries to your employer. You may be required to get an independent medical exam (IME) by the insurance company or your employer. And, it's extremely important to follow the workers compensation process and be aware of the time limits for reporting your injury. In NYS, the time limit for reporting an injury is 30 days.
Get Help with Your Claim
There are several reasons you may want to contact a workers compensation attorney to review your case. First, if your claim is fully or partially denied, you should contact a lawyer to review your case. New York has an informal and formal appeals process for situations where employers and employees are in a dispute about workers comp benefits. Having a skilled, experienced lawyer on your side can make all the difference in the outcome of your case.
If you are seriously injured you may be presented with options for a lump sum payment or a settlement. It’s vital to contact an attorney to review your options to ensure the settlement offer is maximized and fair. Once you agree to a settlement, you cannot go back if you later determine you will need more medical care or time away from work than initially expected.
Brandon J. Broderick, New York Workers Compensation Attorneys
At Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law, we are dedicated to assisting clients throughout New York with their workers’ compensation cases. We have years of experience and the extensive resources you need to recover from your injury and move forward. If you’ve been injured at work or your claim has recently been denied, contact us immediately to understand your options.