Manhattan Workers’ Comp Lawyer
A workplace injury can leave you in a bad situation where you’re in need of workers’ compensation benefits to cover your medical bills and maintain your income. Get the most from your benefits by retaining the services of a Manhattan workers’ comp lawyer.
If you find yourself injured in an accident while you are on the job, you may not know what you need to do to move forward in your life. You may be unsure how to handle your relationship with your employer. You may not even be sure that you’re receiving all of the compensation you deserve—especially if some time has passed since the accident occurred.
Luckily, there are options available to ensure you receive all of the benefits you’re entitled to under New York state law. By hiring a Manhattan workers’ comp lawyer from Finkelstein, Meirowitz & Eidlisz, LLP, you put yourself in the best position possible to make your claims process as smooth as possible.
Who Is Eligible for Workers’ Comp Benefits in Manhattan?
In the state of New York, all for-profit companies are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance. That means nearly all employees are covered and eligible to claim work comp benefits if they’re injured on the job. There are a few exceptions, of course. Some volunteer workers aren’t eligible, for example.
Here is a list of the types of employees who are eligible to receive work comp benefits under New York law:
- All for-profit employees, including part-time workers, leased workers, family workers, and volunteers
- Employees who work for counties and municipalities and are engaged in work deemed hazardous
- Public school teachers, except those employed in New York City because they are covered by a different law
- New York state employees, including some volunteer workers
- Domestic workers employed more than forty hours a week for the same employer
- Farm workers who were paid $1,200 or more for farm work in that calendar year
- Most workers of nonprofit organizations
- Any other workers that workers comp officials deem eligible
Understanding the Timeline of Workers’ Compensation Claims
One of the most important factors your Manhattan workers’ comp lawyer will help you with is the timeline of your claim. Receiving your benefits hinges on following the proper protocols and time constraints—without doing so, you face the risk of losing the right to claim your benefits at all. Although you have two years after your accident to submit your claim to the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board, you should aim to get this step done as soon as possible.
First and foremost, you will need to get any medical treatment to care for your injuries immediately after your accident. Although the full extent of your injuries may not be noticeable right away, it’s important to get a doctor’s diagnosis of your condition. Within forty-eight hours of your accident, your doctor should have provided you with a preliminary medical report.
Next, you’ll need to make sure you notify your employer of your accident. This will need to be done in writing, within no more than thirty days from the day that your accident occurred.
Once these first two steps have been completed, you should receive a written statement from your employer’s insurance company regarding your rights under workers’ compensation laws. Once all is said and done, if your claim is approved, you’ll begin receiving payments approximately fourteen days after your employer’s report is received.
Filing a Work Comp Claim for an Occupational Disease in Manhattan
An occupational disease is an illness or sickness that arose from your employment. It could be a sickness you contracted at a building or work location, or it could be a sickness that came from your work duties.
For example, let’s say you’re a factory worker and you obtained a work-related disease due to the products you encountered on a daily basis. You can obtain work comp benefits while recovering from your disease, or you can receive disability payments—depending on how serious your illness is.
Another example of an occupational disease is hearing loss. When you work in an environment where you’re exposed to constant loud noise, that exposure could result in hearing loss.
You can file a Manhattan workers’ comp claim to obtain benefits for occupational diseases. Any disease or illness you can show happened at work or because of work can warrant compensation, but some types of occupational diseases are better known. Here is a list of common work-related illnesses:
- Hearing and vision loss
- Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)
- Lung disease
- Breathing conditions like asthma
- Poisoning and toxic exposure
- Skin conditions
Classifying Your Manhattan Workplace Disability
An important step in receiving the benefits you need for a workplace injury in Manhattan is to seek medical treatment. Once you’ve visited the doctor for your injury, he or she should begin documenting your injury and providing you with information about your recovery.
In some cases, the injured may be expected to make a full recovery. In other cases, a doctor may determine the injured worker will never fully recover from the injury. Your injury’s classification will determine what kinds of workman’s comp benefits you’re owed.
You may be eligible to receive benefits for life—if your injury is very serious and impacts your ability to work. See below for a detailed explanation of the disability classifications that affect your benefits.
Temporary Total Disability
This classification identifies your injury as completely limiting your ability to work; however, your disability is deemed temporary.
An example would be if you broke both of your legs and you work construction. You won’t be able to return to work immediately, but you are expected to eventually make a full recovery and be no worse for wear.
Temporary Partial Disability
This classification identifies your injury as only partially affecting your ability to work. For example, if you broke one leg and you work a job where you could help out by doing office work while your leg is healing. This classification also means you will will recover from your injury.
Permanent Total Disability
A permanent and total disability classification means your ability to work the job you had before your injury has been completely lost. You can’t work that job because of the seriousness of your injury, and you are not expected to ever be able to return to that type of work again.
An example of a permanent total disability is a spinal injury that has affected your mobility for life. This disability classification has no limit on how many weeks you can receive benefits.
Permanent Partial Disability
This disability classification is for those whose wage-earning capacity has been limited by a permanent injury, but the injury doesn’t prevent the worker from working other types of jobs.
Examples of this classification would be a permanent injury to the arm, shoulder, hand, or foot. Your injury will affect you, but it’s still possible for you to work. There is a limit to the number of weeks you can receive these benefits.
What to Do if Your Claim Is Denied
Sadly, your claim won’t always be approved. More often than not, the denial of a work comp claim isn’t actually a just or right decision. Many insurance companies will do everything they can to try and limit their payout amounts, even if the victim is actually deserving of compensation. For example, they may try to insinuate that your injury wasn’t the result of a workplace accident—rather, that it was sustained while you were off the clock.
In other instances, your claim may be approved, but the insurance company may try to suggest that your injuries aren’t as substantial as you say they are, and they may try to refuse you compensation for your medical claims. In these scenarios, you’re often left struggling to pay your medical bills out of pocket, further worsening your recovery period.
In either case, your Manhattan workers’ comp lawyer will prove to be invaluable. We will use our legal prowess and expertise to work with the insurance company and your employer to ensure your full benefits. Our firm will build a strong case based on evidence and professional testimony to prove your eligibility for full workers’ compensation benefits.
Benefits You Can Receive Under Work Comp
There are a few benefits you can receive once your workers’ compensation claim is approved. Some of the benefits you may be able to collect include the following:
- Compensation for any medical expenses you may have incurred as a result of your workplace accident
- Reimbursement for any costs required to make a career change due to your accident
- Damages for any permanent or semi-permanent injuries you may have sustained
- If your workplace accident resulted in injuries that lasted at least twelve months or more, you may be able to collect Social Security Disability benefits in addition to your workers’ compensation benefits
- Reimbursement for lost wages, usually equivalent to about two-thirds of your weekly salary
You Are Protected from Retaliation by Your Employer
Many injured workers hesitate to file a claim because they mistakenly believe that receiving workers’ compensation is equivalent to suing their employer. This is not the case, as workers’ compensation is a form of insurance policy that for-profit employers are required to carry in case workers get hurt on the job. In fact, one of the purposes of work comp is to prevent employers from being sued by hurt employees, so you don’t have to worry about this.
However, it is true that some employers try to pressure injured workers into not filing for benefits. They do this because they worry that too many claims will result in an increase to their premiums. If your employer is doing this to you, your Manhattan workers’ comp lawyer can help you interact with your employer so you can get the benefits you are legally entitled to.
We can speak with your employer to make your situation and need for compensation clear. We’ll also make certain that they understand that you cannot be punished for seeking the benefits you are legally entitled to.
Turn to a Manhattan Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If you are in need of legal assistance as you prepare to file your workers’ compensation claim, you can find the help you need with Finkelstein, Meirowitz & Eidlisz, LLP. With over 22,000 cases under our belts and forty years of experience on our side, we can ensure the best chance for successfully obtaining work comp benefits for your workplace accident.
To speak with a Manhattan workers’ comp lawyer from our team to discuss your claim during a free consultation, give us a call. We can be reached by phone at 212-385-9190. We can also be reached online through our contact form, which is located at the bottom of the page.