NYS Workers Compensation provides payments for wages and medical expenses for employers that are injured or have become ill while on the job in NY. While this insurance is a comprehensive benefit for all workers, it is not available to those that may have been under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs, nor to those that have intentionally injured themselves.
NYS workers comp claims are paid when the employer or insurance company accept a workers claim regarding an injury or illness. Employers and insurance companies have the right to reject the claim and send the case to be decided by a workers' compensation judge. While the case is being evaluated, the worker may be eligible for disability payments. If disability payments are received, this money is subtracted from any future workers comp payments.
If you are a worker in New York and have been injured on the job, you must notify your supervisor of the injury and circumstances within 30 days of the injury. Failure to do so can result in the loss of your rights to workers comp benefits.
NY workers injured on the job need to be aware that there are requirements for medical care except for emergency situations. The doctor or physician needs to be authorized by the Workers' Compensation Board. Assistance in finding the appropriate healthcare provider is available at 1-800-781-2362. As long as the workers comp case is not disputed, the cost of medical care is covered by your employer or employer's insurance company.
Payments for lost wages in NYS are based on a calculation of 2/3 times your average weekly wage times the percentage that you are disabled. So, if your average weekly wage was $400 and you are 100% disabled, you will receive $266.67/week. The weekly benefit payments are subject to maximum limits. For the period of July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011, the maximum weekly payment is $739.83.
While NYS employees may represent themselves during the workers comp process, the laws and documents can be quite complex and you may want to consider having the assistance of an attorney. If you do use the assitance of an attorney, the fees will be deducted from workers comp benefits.
NYS Workers Compensation is a tremendous service for NYS employees as well as employers. For employees, it provides financial coverage for unexpected situations. For employers, it limits financial risk from unexpected situations. However, the costs of workers comp can easily become difficult to control. Medical fees keep increasing and the poor economy has resulted in decreased investment returns, leaving a smaller pool of money for benefit payouts. This leaves no room for fraudulent workers comp claims. Please understand the seriousness of submitting a fake workers comp claim and know that workers found guilty of workers comp fraud are guilty of committing a felony.
Ultimately, the goal of the NYS workers compensation system is to get workers back to work. Multiple studies have shown that workers that return to work sooner than those that remain out of work have increased confidence, less risk of depression, a brighter financial future and other significant benefits. New York has programs and assistance designed to help workers heal, train, and get back earning the level of money above that amount they receive for workers comp.
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