Every day, hundreds of construction sites operate all over New York City, and every day construction workers are injured on the job. These injuries can result in life-altering changes. Recovery can take a person out of work for weeks or even months, resulting in lost wages and financial hardship.
Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo, P.C. understands the hardships that injured construction workers can face after getting hurt on the job. Hiring a lawyer from our team of legal experts can help you determine your options for moving forward with a workers’ compensation claim or pursuing legal action, receiving fair compensation for your injuries.
Construction workers are hardworking people who face serious hazards every day in order to keep our city running smoothly. These dangers are present along every step of the construction process and can even occur just by walking around a work site. Construction workers deserve to receive fair compensation for these too-common injuries, especially if these injuries impact their ability to live, work, and perform daily functions.
Our New York construction workers’ compensation lawyers are dedicated to assisting injured workers along every step of the claim process, from consultation to settlement and everything in between. Our goal is to facilitate the legal proceedings for our clients so they can focus on recovery, placing less burden on the injured worker and their families.
Our firm represents clients throughout the New York and New Jersey areas in filing workers’ compensation claims for numerous types of injuries, including exposure to toxic substances, injuries from fallen debris and structural defects, and faulty machinery. Even if the injury occurred due to a failure in personal protection, we will represent you and seek the fair compensation you deserve.
A set of workers’ compensation laws protect workers who risk injury on the job in New York.
New York employers are required to supply all of their employees with workers’ compensation coverage. Employees who have the right to workers’ compensation insurance provided by their employer include:
However, not all workers are eligible for workers’ compensation insurance. Exempt employees include:
The state of New York operates under a no-fault worker’s compensation system, which means that a worker will receive benefits even if they were at fault for the incident. For example, if a construction worker does not wear his hardhat on the work site and is hit in the head by falling debris, they will still receive benefits even though they were technically at fault for the incident.
Construction employers must purchase workers’ compensation coverage if they employ one or more people. Chances are, you are covered by workers’ compensation insurance – if your employer is following the law and wants to protect their interests.
The costs of workplace injuries can be extremely high. When you factor in lost wages, medical bills, and other fees, expenses could total thousands of dollars, if not tens of thousands. Purchasing workers’ compensation insurance takes the responsibility off of the employer.
This insurance also prevents workers from filing lawsuits against their employer, which would raise the costs of a worker’s injury from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands – even to millions of dollars. By receiving the no-fault insurance benefits, workers relinquish their right to file a lawsuit against their employer.
Purchasing workers’ compensation is more than legal compliance for an employer – it’s economic protection. Workers’ compensation laws aim to protect the employer more than they aim to protect the employee. However, this insurance does provide medical and wage benefits for injured construction workers in New York City.
Worker’s compensation insurance covers three categories of expenses for injured workers in New York State:
Medical expenses are one of the more common types of benefits an injured worker will redeem. The insurance will cover any medical expenses incurred as a result of a workplace injury. For example, if a construction worker cuts his hand with a power saw and has to go to the emergency room, workers’ compensation insurance will pay for that hospital visit. If stitches or surgery is needed, the insurance will also pay for it.
If an injury is serious and takes an employee out of work for a period of time, they are entitled to wage replacement benefits. The injured worker is considered totally or partially disabled if they are unable to work for more than seven days and will be entitled to cash benefits.
For example, if a construction worker strains his back while lifting a heavy object and is unable to perform his job because of that injury, he is considered partially disabled. If the injury fails to get better after seven days, he can begin receiving wage replacement benefits.
When a worker suffers injuries that lead to fatality, their spouse and children are entitled to death benefits. Benefits of this kind usually come in the form of the family receiving weekly cash payments equal to two-thirds of the deceased’s weekly wage. The insurance company may also cover funeral expenses for the employee.
For example, if a construction worker is killed while on the job and his average weekly wage for the year prior to the accident was $500, his spouse and minor children will receive a weekly payment of about $333.
For employers, workers’ compensation insurance also includes Employer’s Liability Protection. In case an employee files a lawsuit for an on-the-job accident, the insurance may also cover the employer’s legal fees.
Although employers are required to supply their employees with workers’ compensation insurance, sticky legal situations can arise when an employee attempts to collect these claims.
An employee may try to use their workers’ compensation insurance benefits and discover that they are not covered. A third party may be responsible for the incident, such as the manufacturer of faulty machinery. The accident could be the fault of the employer not providing safe workplace conditions or failing to follow certain safety codes.
All of the above situations are grounds for legal action. If an employer fails to provide insurance benefits to their employees, they are breaking the law. If they pretend that their employees are covered but pocket the insurance premiums every month, they are breaking the law. It is your right to be covered in case of a workplace injury, and for construction workers, the risk of an accident occurring is much higher than someone who works in an office. Legal action is necessary for these situations.
If you were injured by a faulty tool or piece of heavy machinery, you have the option to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of that tool or machine. If your employer fails to inform you of a safety hazard or is willfully negligent, you might want to consider filing a lawsuit against them.
If you file a workers’ compensation claim and collect benefits, you relinquish your right to file a lawsuit against your employer. If you have collected benefits and still want to file a lawsuit, you need to speak with a lawyer about possible paths forward. Our team of construction workers’ compensation lawyers located in New York City is here and ready to help.
Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo, P.C.’s esteemed team of construction accident lawyers have settled hundreds of cases for New York City construction workers throughout our years of operation.
We have considerable experience working with construction workers throughout New York City and New Jersey. We are committed to working with you to provide real results – and if we don’t win, you don’t pay.
Call our New York City offices at (212) 732-9000 or contact one of our construction workers’ compensation lawyers by filling out the online form. We offer consultations at our offices, but if you are recovering in the hospital or unable to leave your home, our firm will gladly travel to you. These consultations and visits are completely free.
At Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo, P.C. we offer our legal services on a contingency fee basis – this means if you don’t receive compensation, you don’t pay any legal fees. Legal matters are time-sensitive and the chances of winning a workers’ compensation case or receiving fair benefits can lessen with time. Contact our award-winning firm today to discuss your legal options.