New York workers who suffer an injury at work because of an accident, or those who suffer illnesses because of their jobs, may have a rightful claim to financial compensation. You may believe that your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance would cover you in the event of an injury, but that may not necessarily be the case.
You would be wise to be fully aware of your rights and your ability to claim compensation through this insurance, whether you are already injured or not. When you are aware of your entitlements, you can better protect yourself in the event that you need to make a claim either now or at some point in the future.
Who gets benefits?
Some people wrongfully assume that every person is eligible for workers’ compensation if he or she suffers an injury at work. While this is true for many, not every type of worker has this support. Workers will only qualify for these benefits if they have classification as an employee, unlike independent contractors. You would be wise to know your employee classification, as some types of workers may not have coverage, including:
- Seasonal workers
- Agricultural workers
- Undocumented workers
- Domestic workers, such as babysitters, nannies and housekeepers
Even if you have the right type of employee classification, it does not necessarily mean that you will be able to get workers’ compensation benefits. Only certain types of injuries qualify, but you may have a claim even if your injury happened in the employee break room, at lunch with a company client or at a company-sponsored event.
In many cases, workers’ compensation also covers mental and emotional injuries related to work, as well as conditions such as carpal tunnel, mesothelioma and chronic pain conditions. When filing for benefits, you may have to prove your employment status and provide documentation of your injury and financial loss.
Fighting the insurance company
Workers’ compensation insurance providers do not have your best interests in mind. They will work hard to disprove your claim, deny your claim or dispute your claim. It may be necessary to fight for the support you deserve, but you do not have to do this alone.
If someone told you that you do not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits or have no right to compensation after a work accident, you may find it beneficial to reach out for support, guidance and a complete evaluation of your case.