Home of the Yankees, Rangers, Bills, Sabres, Mets, and Islanders, as well as the twenty-million people who proudly refer to themselves as New Yorkers, New York State is unlike any other. It never sleeps, prizes winning in sports and in life, and, to “get it done,” requires work around the clock. Unfortunately, despite the state’s emphasis on and enforcement of numerous safety measures, every year tens of thousands of New York workers suffer job-related illnesses or injuries. And the number keeps getting bigger, as evidenced by the Annual Report of the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board, which found that in 2020 alone 139,843 workers’ compensation claims had been assembled.
This is why if you live, work, or have suffered a job-related illness or injury in New York, knowing your rights is incredibly important, as they can keep you and your family from losing the money and benefits you are entitled to.
So, please, don’t gamble with your future. Be proactive and prepare yourself.
You can do this by calling Schwartzapfel Lawyers at 1-800–966-4999 and speaking with one of our experienced personal injury attorneys today.
For more on work-related accidents, injuries, and workers’ compensation in New York State, as well as practical steps you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones, please continue reading.
Ultimate Guide to Worker’s Compensation
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WHAT IS WORKERS’ COMPENSATION?
Workers’ compensation (“workers’ comp” for short) laws ensure that employees who are injured in the course of their employment receive the medical care they require as well as payment for medical expenses and lost wages while out of work. All New York State employees are entitled to workers’ comp benefits from their first day on the job through their last.
WORKERS’ COMPENSATION & NEW YORK STATE EMPLOYERS
Nearly all employers in New York are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Under the NYS workers’ compensation system, employers agree to pay medical expenses and lost wages for all job-related injuries and illnesses suffered by their employees — documented and undocumented, on-the-books and off-the-books alike. This is true even in cases where an employee is partially or completely at fault for his or her injuries.
Regrettably, many New Yorkers are unaware of these laws and thus fail to take action after suffering injuries in work-related accidents. As a result, they oftentimes lose out on the money and benefits they are legally entitled to. Warning: The consequences of this chain of events can be severe — physically, mentally, and financially.
So, what can you do to protect yourself and your family? Simply put: Act now.
Call 1-800-966-4999 and speak with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney today. Alternatively, if you prefer texting to speaking over the phone, you can send a message to 1-917-909-5900 and a member of our staff will be in touch with you shortly.
Please, your financial future is worth it. Keep the benefits you have worked so hard to earn. Act now and team up with Schwartzapfel Lawyers. The information and knowledge we can provide you with won’t cost you a thing and may save you tomorrow.
EXAMPLES OF NEW YORK WORKERS WHOSE WORKERS’ COMPENSATION CLAIMS WE HANDLE
At Schwartzapfel Lawyers, it is our privilege and honor to assist New York workers from all walks of life. For more than thirty-five years, we have fought and won some of the biggest verdicts and settlements in New York State for injured workers in fields including but not limited to:
- Heavy road construction workers
- Heavy machine operators
- Tunnel workers
- Elevator mechanics
- Ship or vessel operators
- Custodial workers
- Teacher aides
- Truck drivers
- Physical therapists
- Physician assistants
- Law enforcement
If injured on the job in New York State, the pain and suffering experienced after an accident can be unimaginable. Please don’t add to your worries by “taking on the system” all alone. Allow us to help you recover the money and benefits you are entitled to so that you can focus on what’s important: getting better.
Call 1-800-966-4999 or text 1-917-909-5900 to schedule your free consultation with Schwartzapfel Lawyers today.
How do I file a workers’ compensation claim?
If you are injured on the job, you must notify your employer of your injury within 30 days, though we recommend you do so immediately so there is no question that your injuries are work-related. In addition to notifying your employer, you must file a C-3 Employee’s Claim Form with the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. This should be done within 30 days so that it can be proven that notice was provided to your employer within 30 days.
Please note: Some employers may try to avoid paying their share by claiming a 1099 employee is a sub-contractor. You should NEVER assume this is the case, as 1099 employees are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits should they meet the proper requirements. To protect your rights, speak with a well-qualified workers’ compensation lawyer today.
Call 1-800-966-4999 or text 1-917-909-5900 and allow Schwartzapfel Lawyers to fight for you!
Workers’ compensation is an insurance policy
Essentially, workers’ compensation is an insurance policy for employers, and was meant to be a system that supported injured employees. However, like all insurance carriers, they want to protect their bottom line. To do this, they must deny as many claims as possible. Accordingly, employees often encounter significant delays and administrative hurdles as they attempt to collect the money and benefits they are entitled to.
As an example: Of all the workers’ compensation claims filed in 2020, 15,507 were controverted. This means that the insurance carrier disputed each of those claims and filed medical documentation to support each dispute. Those challenges sent many of those cases to a complex hearing before a Workers’ Compensation Law Judge, where testimony, medical documents, and other evidence had to be weighed. Even New York’s own workers’ compensation officials acknowledge that the system can be stressful and a far cry from worker-friendly. And because your employer will have a team of adjusters and attorneys working for them, you should also have a team to fight your battles and win your case.
So, if you’re injured and your workers’ comp claim has been disputed, it’s time to bring in New York City workers’ compensation professionals. At Schwartzapfel Lawyers, our workers’ compensation attorneys have the knowledge and experience needed to take on the Workers’ Compensation Board.
What if my injury didn’t occur at my job site?
Injuries do not have to occur at your employer’s location for you to be covered by workers’ compensation. However, the employee does need to be working on behalf of the employer when the injury occurs.
For additional details, or to discuss the specifics of your case, please call 1-800-966-4999 and speak with one of our expert workers’ comp attorneys today.
Will my employer be angry if I file a workers’ comp claim?
Many employers understand that accidents happen and this is why they carry workers’ compensation insurance. Still, many employers will try to prevent you from filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. If this occurs, call us immediately — it is against the law to retaliate against an employee for filing a workers’ compensation claim.
How much will I receive through my benefits?
The standard weekly benefit payment is equal to two-thirds of your average weekly wage (with a current maximum of $1,063.05/week). However, this changes depending upon the classification of your disability (e.g. temporary or permanent) and factors like income consistency (e.g. earning a regular wage versus earning tips or being paid a commission).
Can I sue my employer for my injuries?
In most cases, New York State prohibits employees who were injured on the job from suing their employers. As such, unless someone or some entity other than your employer caused your injuries, workers’ comp is the only way to recover damages. This is why it is so critical when choosing a lawyer to choose someone who will fight for you every step of the way.
Trust the NYC workers’ compensation experts
For many New York State employees, the workers’ compensation system can be a daunting process. Often, when tackled alone, it can cause such frustration and confusion that the injured employee may completely give up in pursuing their claims. However, there is a better way to deal with those frustrations in order to get the money and benefits you deserve.
At Schwartzapfel Lawyers, our elite workers’ compensation attorneys have extensive experience in handling all manners of claims and would be honored to assist you in navigating:
- The types of workers’ compensation benefits you and your family could be awarded
- The disability categories that are used to determine your workers’ compensation benefits
- Occupational diseases and New York workers’ compensation claims
- How to maximize and collect your workers’ compensation award as quickly as possible
Moreover, the facts back us up, as, for the past thirty-five years, our workers’ compensation legal team has gotten our clients the money and benefits they deserve time and time again. And in that spirit, please know that if you hire Schwartzapfel Lawyers for your case, we guarantee that we will do everything we can to maximize your compensation, including:
- Ensuring the continuance of your workers’ compensation benefits even after you start a new job, move out of state, or retire
- Ensuring, for certain injuries, the continuance of your workers’ compensation payments continue for the duration of your life
- Ensuring the collection of any additional benefits (e.g. Schedule Loss Awards) as quickly as possible
So, if you or someone you love is injured and unable to work, please know that while the law is on your side, you must act quickly. Having a well-qualified workers’ compensation lawyer to help you can make all the difference.
Don’t delay. Call Schwartzapfel Lawyers at 1-800-966-4999 for a free consultation with one of our experienced workers’ compensation attorneys today.
Getting you the compensation you deserve
After suffering a job-related injury or developing an occupational illness, you deserve every cent and every benefit owed to you by law. But remember, for this to happen, you must file your claim on time. Otherwise, you risk losing your benefits forever. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you with this.
As well, be aware that waiting to speak to a lawyer is good for your employer and bad for you. So, please, don’t gamble with your family’s future. Act now and allow Schwartzapfel Lawyers the privilege of handling your case. It may be the best decision you will ever make.
The clock is ticking. Secure your financial future today by calling 1-800-966-4999 or texting 1-917-909-5900 to speak with a Schwartzapfel Lawyers workers’ comp attorney at no charge.
Finding the attorney that's right for YOU
However unique your case, you will want someone who is experienced in NYC workers’ compensation law, has a proven track record of getting results, and who will fight for you every step of the way. In short: You will want the best workers’ comp representation available.
For more than thirty-five years, Schwartzapfel Lawyers has successfully helped thousands of clients get the money and benefits they are entitled to. We are proud of our hundreds of 5-star Google Reviews and 99% client satisfaction record. Moreover, we have every incentive to get you the largest settlement or verdict possible, as quickly as possible. Why? Because if we don’t win your case, you owe us nothing.
So, if you live in NYC or you or someone you love has been injured or fallen ill due to their work, act now and call us at 1-800-966-4999.
NEW YORK LAW FIRM – OFFICE LOCATIONS
At Schwartzapfel Lawyers P.C. we fight hard to get you the outcome you deserve. To better serve you, we have five office locations in the New York area. If you have any questions, please give us a call today or select any of the location options below to learn more.
WORKERS’ COMPENSATION FAQS
Workers’ compensation laws ensure that employees who are injured in the course of their employment receive the medical care they require, the payment of medical expenses, and money to cover lost wages while they are out of work. The majority of New York employers are required to pay the cost of the workers’ compensation coverage for their employees, and employees are entitled to protection beginning their first day on the job. Additionally, injuries do not necessarily have to occur at the employer’s location for an employee to be protected by workers’ compensation laws; however the employee does need to be working on behalf of the employer when the injury occurs. Workers’ compensation laws are administered by the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board, which is responsible for processing injury claims, verifying claims are valid, conducting hearings, and issuing monetary awards.
If you’ve been injured on the job and are concerned about whether you need to hire a workers’ compensation attorney, this is a good place to start. Without knowing the particular facts of your case, it’s impossible to say for certain whether you need an attorney to help you with your claim. We can, however, give you a general idea about the types of circumstances that may point to a decent do-it-yourself outcome. These circumstances would be:
- Your work-related injury is relatively minor.
- Your employer acknowledges that the injury occurred at work.
- You didn’t miss much work as a result of the injury.
- You don’t have a pre-existing condition that was exacerbated by the new injury.
Essentially, if your work-related injury is relatively minor and you get back to work quickly without any permanent total or partial loss of use or disability, you probably do not need an attorney.
However, even if your circumstances seem relatively uncomplicated, the process can still be tricky. You may at least want to contact an experienced workers’ compensation attorney for a free consultation. The New York workers’ compensation attorneys at Schwartzapfel Lawyers, P.C. are able to walk you through the claims process, alert you to potential snags and give you an honest opinion as to whether or not you can handle the claim on your own.
People usually do not think about Workers’ Compensation benefits until they suffer a work-related injury. Essentially, Workers’ Compensation is a program that pays benefits to employees who have been injured on the job. Employees are entitled to receive benefits for medical expenses and lost income when they are unable to return to work. In exchange for this protection, employees agree not to sue their employers – though there are several exceptions to this rule. In order to receive workers’ compensation benefits two criteria must be met:
Your Injury Must be Work Related
If your injury or illness is work related, chances are that you are covered. If, for instance, you hurt your back lifting something at work this would be considered a work-related injury. Sometimes however, the relationship between your injury and your job may not be as clear-cut. Perhaps you were hurt on your way to work, at a company-sponsored picnic, or your injury developed over the course of time. In this situation the relationship is not as clear, although workers’ compensation benefits may still be available.
You Must be Classified as an Employee
In order to qualify for Workers’ Compensation benefits, you must be an employee of the company. It is important to note that not all workers are considered employees. One example of this is with private contractors. It is important to note that it is not uncommon for employers to intentionally classify a worker as a private contractor, even when they are actually an employee. Under New York Workers’ Compensation law, even if you are paid with a 1099 tax form, or “off the books”, you may still be considered an employee.
When most people think of Workers’ Compensation, they think about on-the-job accidents. This might include slip and fall injuries, injuries related to equipment or machinery, or car accidents that occur while making a delivery for your employer. While these injuries are all covered by Workers’ Compensation, Workers’ Compensation law in New York also protects against occupational diseases and repetitive stress injuries. Occupational diseases like lung disease may occur after long-term exposure to dangerous substances like silica or asbestos; also, a loss of hearing from daily exposure to loud noises in your work environment may qualify as an occupational disease. Repetitive injuries can occur when workers perform the same task day in and day out; common repetitive stress injuries include carpal tunnel syndrome, as well as chronic back, shoulder, or knee problems that occur from many years of doing the same job. These chronic injuries can cause a lot of pain and prevent you from doing your job.
Do not Avoid Your Doctor’s Visit
Regardless of the type of injury you have suffered, you must see a doctor who is authorized by the Workers’ Compensation Board to handle Workers’ Compensation cases. He or she will document how your case is work-related and take care of filing the appropriate medical paperwork. We cannot stress enough how important it is to be honest with your medical provider about your symptoms and how the injury occurred. If your doctor does not have the full picture, he or she cannot treat your injuries properly. In addition, your medical records will become evidence in your workers’ compensation case. If you fail to disclose symptoms and later tell the doctor that you are having new pain, the insurance company may assume the new symptoms were caused by an entirely different incident— and not the one that is work-related.
Most important, if you suffer from any of the injuries we discussed above – including occupational diseases, repetitive injuries, or chronic back, knee or shoulder pain – ask your doctor if these injuries could be or are work-related. If the answer is yes, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.
Employers in New York are required to post a notice with Workers’ Compensation information in a conspicuous place. This notice should include contact information for the workers’ compensation insurance carrier and list the employee’s rights.
Your Well-Being Comes First
If you are injured on the job, you must notify your employer of your injury within 30 days, though we recommend you do so immediately so there is no question that your injuries are work-related. Even if you do not believe your injuries are serious, report the incident. We have seen many cases where the injuries turned out to be much more severe than originally thought. Your health comes first, so if the injury is serious, you should obtain medical help immediately and ask a co-worker, family member, or Union representative to notify your employer.
File Your Accident or Illness Report ASAP
You should also complete your employer’s written accident report as a followup to any verbal notification of your injury. Keep a copy for your records. Your employer is responsible for filing a Form C-2 with the Board; request a copy of this, too. If you belong to a Union, you should notify your Union representative immediately. In the event your claim is due to an occupational illness, notify your employer as soon as your doctor tells you your injury is likely work-related. In addition to notifying your employer, you must file a C-3 Employee’s Claim Form with the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. By law, you have up to two years to file this form; however, we recommend you do so immediately to ensure your rights are protected. The form can be found online at www.wcb.ny.gov.
Gather Additional Evidence
Your injury may not appear to be severe, but it is always a good idea to collect evidence and document your injury. Many types of injuries, especially neck, back, shoulder, and knee injuries, can get progressively worse with time – not better. It is not uncommon for a person who mistakenly believes they suffered a minor injury to end up having to undergo surgery. In some cases, the injury ultimately results in the person being unable to return to work. Do not gamble with your family’s financial future. Protect yourself by filing that claim. You may wish to take photographs of the injury and the location where it occurred, write down anyone who was present and witnessed the accident (ask them for their contact information, as well), and if video is available, hold it as evidence. Write down everything you recall about the incident. You should also keep copies of all medical paperwork and related invoices showing expenses for things like prescription medications and medical equipment (crutches, wheelchair, etc.).