What are My Rights under New York Workers Compensation Laws?

What are My Rights under New York Workers Compensation Laws?

Virtually every employer in the state of New York is required to provide workers compensation insurance for all employees. This includes family members, part- and full-time workers, and leased employees. Workers compensation is insurance that provides cash benefits and/or medical care for workers who are injured or become ill as a direct result of their job. Littman and Babiarz are workers compensation lawyers in central New York who can answer all your questions regarding your rights under workers compensation laws.

Basic Tenets of Workers Compensation Laws

New York employers pay for this insurance and are prohibited from requiring employees to contribute to the cost. Weekly wages and necessary medical expenses are paid by your employer’s insurance carrier, under the direction of the Workers Compensation Board of New York. Workers compensation lawyers in Auburn, New York, can provide more information about your coverage and the filing process.

Workers compensation does not seek to ascertain blame or fault for any party. The amount received by a claimant is not reduced if they are at fault for their injury, nor is it increased if the employer is at fault. Workers compensation does not provide remuneration for pain and suffering or punitive damages. Moreover, a worker loses his or her right to workers compensation if the injury is the sole result from intoxication by drugs or alcohol, or from a willful intent to injure him or herself, or another party.

Facts and Rights for Employees

Below are more facts and rights for employees regarding specific areas of the workers compensation laws of New York State.

Are there any time limits before I can begin receiving workers compensation benefits? Yes.

  • Compensation is not allowed for the first seven days. If, however, the injury or illness in question results in a disability of more than 14 days, compensation shall be retroactive to begin from the first date of injury.

Are there any time limits for filing a workers compensation claim? Yes.

  • Written notice of an injury or death for which compensation is payable must be given to the employer within 30 days after the accident or illness.
  • Claims for compensation for an illness or accident must be filed with the state workers compensation board within two years of the illness or accident in question.
  • Claims for compensation for an illness or injury causing hearing loss must be filed either within two years of the date of injury or, if two years have passed, within 90 days after you realize your hearing loss is due to your employment.

May I choose my own doctor for treatment under workers compensation? Yes.

  • Any employee covered under workers compensation in the State of New York may select any physician for treatment of injuries or illness, so long as the said physician is authorized for workers compensation treatment by the board of workers compensation.

Is every worker in New York State covered by workers compensation? No.

  • The State of New York requires most employers to carry workers compensation insurance coverage, including most employers of domestic and agricultural workers.
  • Additionally, special funds were allotted by Congress to provide for workers compensation benefits to volunteers who assisted with the World Trade Center rescue, recovery, and clean-up effort.

What benefits are available to workers through workers compensation?

Employees injured in work-related accidents or who suffer from occupational diseases may receive:

  • Wage replacement benefits
  • Medical treatment
  • Vocational rehabilitation

Wage benefits are based on two-thirds of the worker’s average weekly income. Note: workers compensation does not pay for pain and suffering or punitive damages.

Is my employer required to hold my job until after my recovery? No.

New York workers compensation laws do not require your employer to keep your job open for you. In some cases the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) will apply. If the FMLA applies, your employer must keep your job open for you.

Workers Compensation Lawyers in Central New York

The Law Firm of Littman & Babiarz are workers compensation lawyers in central New York who have over 30 years of experience serving the workers of Elmira, Syracuse, Ithaca, and Auburn, New York. If you or a loved one sustained an on-the-job injury, understanding the benefits that apply to you can be difficult. Call us right away at 607-277-7527 or contact us online to schedule your free initial consultation.