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.).