If you suffer an injury on the job in New York, your top priority is, of course, to seek medical attention. If your injuries are minor, you might be back on the job after a few days of rest. A more severe injury, however, might cause you miss a substantial amount of work, which could spark financial distress in your household.
One of the benefits of filing a workers’ compensation claim is to be able to replace lost wages during recovery after a workplace injury. If you’re lying in bed trying to get better and no income is coming in, the benefits you receive through the workers’ compensation program can help you make ends meet in the meantime.
If you don’t follow the guidelines, you might become ineligible
There are certain steps you need to take to be in compliance with workers’ compensation guidelines. For instance, you must report your injuries to your employer in a timely manner. There are numerous other rules to follow as well. If you fail to adhere to the guidelines, the benefits you would otherwise receive to replace lost wages may no longer be available in your case.
Did your injury occur while you were at work?
Another issue that determines whether your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance will cover your expenses after an injury is if the injuries were a direct result of your employment. Having a heavy object fall on your foot while loading a truck for work is one thing. Having a tooth knocked out during a lunch time basketball game with co-workers is another.
While one type of injury might be considered a direct result of a worker’s typical duties on the job, another might be considered reckless behavior that is not associated with a normal course of duty in the workplace. Even in situations where it appears quite evident that your injuries occurred as a result of your employment, it’s possible that your employer or an insurance agency acting on your employer’s behalf might try to deny your workers’ compensation claim.
What to do if this happens
In New York and all other states, injured employees whose workers’ comp claims are denied are typically entitled to file an appeal. There are numerous reasons for the denial of a claim in the initial filing process. Sometimes, a worker has failed to include enough details regarding the exact events that led to the injuries in question.
It can be helpful to speak with someone who is well-versed in workers’ compensation laws before filing an appeal. You might also be glad to know that many initially denied claims ultimately gain approval through the appellate process.