As with personal injury cases, a statute of limitations applies to workers’ compensation claims. New York has statutory limits that bar a workers’ comp claim after a certain time frame. This means you only have a certain amount of time to file your claim after your injury before you are unable to do so under the law.
If you have been injured while on the job in New York, you should pursue the benefits you are entitled to as soon as you can. The statute of limitations for workers’ compensation claims is two years. However, when the clock starts ticking is dependent on two factors: the date of your workplace injury or the date of your last payment. Whichever date is later is the date in which you have two years from to file before the statute expires.
New York law requires workers to report their work-related accident, sickness, or illness within 30 days after its occurrence. This is known as a “notice.” If you develop other injuries or complications from the workplace accident, that’s when the two-year statute of limitations comes into play, and you must file by the deadline.
If you cannot work, either permanently or temporarily, you might be eligible to recover disability benefits.
While it ultimately depends on the nature of your workplace injury, you could be eligible for one of the following:
- Permanent Total Disability – For workers who have permanently and totally lost their ability to work.
- Permanent Partial Disability – For workers who have permanently lost part of their earning capacity.
- Temporary Total Disability – For workers who are disabled to the extent where they cannot work temporarily.
- Temporary Partial Disability – For workers who have lost partial earning capacity temporarily.
Here is the breakdown of the statutory limits for different types of workers’ compensation claims in New York:
- Injuries related to work. You have to file a workers’ compensation claim no more than 2 years after your workplace accident. Report your injury as soon as you can. It must be reported within 30 days.
- Occupational diseases – You have to file a claim either two years from when the disease or two years from when you knew or should’ve known the disease was related to your work.
- Hearing loss related to work – You have to wait 90 days after the date when you left the workplace with harmful noise or 90 days from when you resigned from the job where the noise exposure was.
Reasons for Workers’ Comp Denials
Failure to provide notice to your employer within 30 days and failure to file a claim before the two-year statute of limitations expires are two common reasons for claim denials. Other reasons include:
- Injuries were not work-related. To have your claim approved, your injury or illness has to be work-related. Injuries outside of employment do not qualify for New York workers’ compensation benefits.
- Injuries suffered while drunk or on drugs. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. However, the system does not apply if the worker was intoxicated when they were injured. If an employee is hurt because they were under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, the workers’ comp claim will be denied.
- Failure to continue with medical care. If you do not keep seeing a doctor as advised, your benefits might be denied or reduced as a result.
- Self-inflicted injuries. If a worker intentionally causes their injuries so they can file a fraudulent workers’ comp claim, it will lead to a denial.
- Willful recklessness or negligence. If evidence shows that you were engaging in horseplay, your claim may be denied.
- Injury cause unclear. In order to successfully file a workers’ comp claim, the cause of the injury has to be determined. If the cause of injury cannot be determined, the insurer may try to argue that the injury was not related to your work. You may have to have an independent medical evaluation done to prove your injury occurred at work.
Contact a New York Workers’ Comp Lawyer
When you are injured on the job in New York, the best thing you can do is report the accident to your supervisor as soon as possible after the accident. According to the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board, workers have to report injuries within 30 days of the occurrence. Under New York law, workers have up to two years to file a workers’ compensation claim if the workplace injury has caused other damage. For instance, if you slip and fall on a floor because of a slippery surface, you may report the accident but may return to work right away. If you later develop hip pain as a result of the slip and fall, filing a is still an option.
In addition to reporting your workplace injuries immediately and seeking medical treatment, it is vital that you seek the help of an experienced New York workers’ comp attorney. An attorney will ensure that you are not barred from receiving any workers’ comp benefits that you are rightfully entitled to. If, for whatever reason, your claim is denied, a lawyer can help you appeal it. The attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C., have extensive experience in forcing insurance companies to provide our injured clients with the benefits they are entitled to.
Finz & Finz, P.C. can help you with all aspects of your workers’ compensation claim and ensure you get the benefits you are entitled to for your workplace injuries. To learn more about your rights and options after an on-the-job accident in New York, contact the skilled and knowledgeable New York workers’ comp attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C. now at (855) TOP-FIRM to set up a free consultation. We are prepared to answer all of your questions related to your workers’ comp claim and help in any way we can.