Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that is designed to help employees that have an occupational illness or have been injured on the job. If you sustain injuries at your place of employment, workers’ compensation insurance will cover the incident. If it is a serious injury, you may also qualify for long time benefits, typically covered by workers comp. Submitting a claim can be complicated, but if you work with a Niagara Falls workers compensation lawyer it can simplify the process. At Cellino Law, we have many attorneys that can help you with document preparation, as well as help you submit the necessary forms on time so that you are properly compensated.
Worker’s Compensation laws deem it appropriate for individuals working for a company to receive financial compensation related to injuries they have sustained on the job. It is a right of limited protection, one that is given to workers if they agreed to not file any lawsuits against their employers if it is found that they were negligent.
Worker’s Compensation benefits are provided by employers, by law, and it is also available for those that are self-insured in New York State. There is a formula that is associated in New York for determining the benefits related to loss of income, medical care, time off, and the medical reason that they were injured. Worker’s Compensation protects the worker and their family, plus it mitigates the need for needing to file a lawsuit. Unfortunately, these benefits can be denied. When this occurs our personal injury lawyers in Niagara Falls will do everything in their power to make sure you are properly compensated.
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Common Injuries Our Niagara Falls Workers Compensation Lawyers Cover
Of all of the states in the United States, New York is a place where there are quite a few hazardous working conditions. The construction sector, plus a few other industries, are inherently dangerous, and accidents can incur within this type of environment.
Here’s a quick list of the accidents that are the most common which occur at workplaces within Niagara Falls, NY:
- Hospital Accidents
- Industrial Accidents
- Building Collapses
- Crane Accidents
- Port or Dock Accidents
- Car Accidents
- Warehouse Accidents
- Scaffold Accidents
- Defective Equipment
- Chemical Accidents
- Construction Accidents
- Office Accidents
- Welding Accidents
- Refinery Accidents
- Mining Accidents
- Forklift Accidents
- Slip and Fall Accidents
- Heavy Machinery Accidents
For many of our clients, these are just a few of the many accidents that can occur leading to their injuries. We have assisted many injured workers that have also been involved in other forms of work-related accidents.
Qualifying Injuries For Workers Compensation In Niagara Falls
If you are on the job, and you sustained an injury, you need to know how you are protected under the New York State Worker’s Compensation benefits. They use quite stringent guidelines, creating many rules that are designed to potentially subvert those that are seeking some type of compensation. If you were at work and sustained your injury, this doesn’t automatically qualify you to get any type of benefits or compensation at all.
You need to make sure that you are covered under these compensation laws, per the rules set up in New York, and that the incident that has led to the injury you have sustained must be in one of these categories:
- The company you are working for must be mandated to have Worker’s Compensation coverage in New York.
- The disability, illness, an injury that you have suffered from must have occurred when you are on duty and it must relate to your job.
- Your employer should have given you notice, in writing, about the incident or accident that led to the illness or injury within a month of when it occurred.
- The medical reports that you receive should state your illness, injury, or disability was directly related to conditions at your workplace, and the accident that you were involved in.
It is unfortunate that even with these specificities that Workers’ Compensation may be unavailable as a result of employers disputing what the insurance actually covers. It is so important to have very strong evidence, as well as medical evidence, to ensure that your compensation can be delivered as a result of your injury at the job site.
Who Pays Workers’ Compensation Claims?
There is a common thought that you may be fired as a result of filing a workers’ compensation claim as a result of the injuries that you sustained. This is the impression that New York State workers often have, and it is emboldened by the thought that their employers are going to spend more money on the insurance as a result of filing your claim. However, this is not true at all. There are several companies in New York that have workers compensation insurance. Therefore, the company is not liable for paying out of pocket for your injuries or claims, and therefore they should not affect the injured individual or compromise their ability to maintain their position.
Domestic Workers And Workers Compensation Insurance In New York
There are many people in New York that hire nannies, gardeners, housekeepers, and also babysitters. These domestic workers can be injured while on the job, yet it is never clear whether or not these people that hire them legally count as an employer. It is possible employees in this field may be viewed as simply a contractor. You need to be aware that homeowners do not have a requirement to act as a company that hires employees.
In certain circumstances, these domestic workers are perceived as resident employees that merely provide household services. As an example, if a homeowner decides to hire one or more employees for the express purpose of providing a certain function, they are certainly obligated, under the Worker’s Compensation laws of New York, to cover these domestic workers.
What Damages Can You Receive Through A Workers Compensation Claim?
It is our job to determine the proper compensation that you will deserve if you reach a settlement. This is related to the following information:
- A disability payment if it does apply
- Loss of wages now and in the future
- Medical treatments now and in the future including surgery
- Medical treatments and care that you will need up until this point in time
Cellino Law has successfully obtained millions of dollars in settlement money for those that have been injured in a workplace setting. As you can assume, insurance companies are skilled when handling these cases so you’ll need an attorney who knows how to properly negotiate these claims. They typically provide favorable settlements when confronted by a lawyer in order to avoid going to trial. Individuals called insurance adjusters, as well as the opposing attorneys, will prepare and analyze these cases before the trial date happens.
This is one of the reasons why large settlements are often obtained for our clients. We understand our opponent, and since we know they don’t want to go to trial, the settlements are typically higher. Our goal is to always provide you with the largest claim settlement available to your workers’ compensation claim. We do offer free consultations and you can contact us today.
Benefits Covered By Worker’s Compensation
This type of insurance is specifically designed to provide medical or cash benefits for the workers that were injured on the job as a result of occupational injuries, disease, or illness.
The Worker’s Compensation Board of New York is where claims are processed, and is also where the employers are going to pay a weekly cash benefit, as well as medical care, directed by this New York-based board.
There is a weekly benefit which is two-thirds of the weekly wages that the worker will receive on this type of disability.
These benefits are available to someone diagnosed as totally and permanently disabled, or a widow/widower receiving death benefits if the incident causing the injury or death occurred before January 1st, 1979.
there are many medical benefits, specifically Medicare, that may be related to the original illness or injury which are designed to help people recover from the disabilities or injuries they sustained.
Social Security Benefits
Designed for those that are critically disabled, these are continuous benefits that will last at least one year. Permanently disabled employees can qualify for this monthly benefit provided by Social Security.
If an employee has died, specifically because of a work-related injury, this benefit will be exercised. There will often be surviving dependents, such as a spouse or minor children, that may receive this death benefit.
Workers Compensation And Disability
Claims for this disability benefit filed by the injured party will either be for total or partial disability benefits. If someone is only disabled partially, this typically means they have lost the ability to earn a living as they once did. They will have a limitation associated with the position that they have, and it may lead to doing different work or part-time work.
When you are able to receive total disability benefits, this means that you can no longer work. A partial disability benefit may also require the person to seek other jobs that they can actually do and to subsequently accept these offers once found.
Understanding the various restrictions can become very confusing when dealing with workers’ compensation. It’s much easier, however, when you have legal representation. Cellino Law is committed to providing our clients with the easiest way to get this type of compensation. Our Worker’s Compensation lawyers can assist you with filing for your benefits. You can contact us for help if you do need to get started.
Is It Possible To Be Fired If You File A Workers’ Comp Claim In New York?
There are certain rights that should always be protected, particularly if you have been injured on the job. Your employer, for example, doesn’t need to keep your job open. As a result of this, it’s possible to secure it via the family medical leave act that will allow these employees to receive 12 weeks of unpaid leave, or up to a year of leave because of a critical or serious medical issue.
Employers cannot fire people as a result of filing a workers’ compensation claim. Likewise, a new employer is not allowed to ask you if you have ever filed one.
Maintaining communication with your employer is of utmost importance if you are not able to work. You need to make sure that your boss understands your status and they should also understand when you can come back. By keeping your employer informed, when you do get to come back, this will ensure your position will not be filled.
How To File A Workers Compensation Claim In New York
This is a quick overview of how you can file a claim through Worker’s Compensation as provided in New York. This information is dependent upon your unique situation. You can contact our practice and schedule a consultation to review your workers’ compensation claim with an attorney and clear up any questions you may have regarding the claims process.
It is so important to go to a hospital or doctor immediately after your accident, plus you need to let your supervisor know what has happened. Within 30 days, you need to give your employer, in writing, notification of what has occurred. During a period of two years, from the date of the injury or accident, you must file a form, called the Employee Claim form, and send this to the Worker’s Compensation main office in your area.
Once notified, your employer has to report this incident to their insurance company using Form C-2 within 10 days. Once the Employer’s Report has been received, within 14 days, the insurance adjuster must issue some type of a statement, in writing, what your rights are so that you know. After 18 days, the insurance company can begin to pay you your benefits, unless it was denied within seven days of filing it.
How Do Workers’ Compensation Payments Work?
After a claim is approved through Worker’s Compensation, you will get payments every other week. Every 45 days you are required by law to send in progress reports to the Board, specifically from your doctor. After 12 weeks has gone by, if you are still recovering, the insurance provider must contemplate the possibility of giving you rehabilitation treatment.
Filing a claim for workers’ compensation can be very stressful. However, you do need to do this so that you can get the benefits that are yours.
Our Niagara Falls injury law firm has significant experience, allowing us to guide and help you as you file your workers’ compensation claim and can even assist in getting the maximum benefits under Worker’s Compensation law, which begins with contacting our Cellino Law firm.
What You Should Know About Worker’s Compensation Hearings And Appeals
It is possible that, after filing your workers’ compensation claim, your employer may: accept or contest the claim, or they may even contest a portion of the claim that has been filed. A workers’ compensation claim is only designed to pay out once via the employer, or the insurance company must have made an agreement on the type of illness or injury that the individual has sustained. If the claims are over disputed, or if they are contrasted by the employer or even the insurance provider, benefits will not go out and the case must be presented to a law judge for Worker’s Compensation that will make the ultimate decision.
The Worker’s Compensation board may have a hearing in front of the judge. If the judge determines that you have a valid claim, they will then decide on the duration and the amount of the compensation that you will regularly receive.
It is possible to appeal this decision, whether you are the employer or employee, for a period of 30 days after the decision of the judge. If this is granted, there will be three board members that will form a panel that will review the case. This panel can:
- Modify the judge’s decision
- Rescind what the judge decided to do
- Restore your case as related to ongoing developments with that particular judge
If the panel members are not able to agree with each other, you may apply for a comprehensive board review which will lead to rescinding, changing, or confirming the decision the judge made.
If the goal is to appeal the decision made by the board, you must do this within 30 days. This appeal must be presented to the Appellate Division of New York State Supreme Court, specifically the Third Department, in order to make a decision. This decision made by the Appellate Division can also go through the appeals process, taking it to the Court of Appeals so another decision can be made.