Have you been hurt on the job? If the answer is “yes,” you should speak to an attorney as soon as possible.
Workers’ compensation claims can be complicated. In addition, you may be entitled to recovery of damages beyond workers’ comp if negligence was a factor.
A New York City work injury lawyer at Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi can help you claim workers’ compensation benefits and additional damages related to a work accident. Please call (212) 543-1600 to reach our Manhattan law office today.
How a New York Workers’ Compensation Attorney Can Help
Since 1962, New York law has required employers in just about every conceivable industry to carry workers’ compensation insurance (see New York Workers’ Compensation Law § 3). As a result, workers in practically any occupation will be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they are hurt on the job or develop a medical condition as a result of their employment.
Unfortunately, legitimate workers’ compensation claims are often denied and benefits may be underpaid. As a result, it is generally in your best interest to consult a workers’ compensation lawyer if you suffer a work injury.
New York City workers’ compensation lawyers at Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi can help with multiple aspects of your claim, including:
- Investigating the workplace accident and/or the cause of a work injury
- Gathering evidence that an injury or illness is work-related
- Obtaining any available evidence such as photos, witness testimony, video surveillance footage, etc.
- Reviewing your employer’s workers’ comp insurance coverage
- Collecting and reviewing your medical records
- Discussing your diagnosis and treatment with your doctors
- Helping you file for workers’ compensation
- Filing an appeal if your claim is denied
- Making your case at hearings before the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board
- Negotiating a workers’ compensation settlement with your employer and/or the insurer
- Preparing your case and taking it to trial if necessary
In addition, our work injury lawyers will determine if you have additional legal options outside of workers’ compensation. You may be entitled to recovery of additional damages if the negligence of a third party was a factor.
I am delighted to provide this testimonial for Mr. DiGirolamo. His representation of me during my case was unflagging over its four-year duration. He kept me informed, and prepared for every eventuality as the case progressed.
He understood my fears and pain, and saw to it that Workmans Comp provided support for me until my civil case was settled. He prepared me substantially whenever necessary. I was very grateful for his understanding of the disastrous effect my accident had on every aspect of my life.
He was always supportive and kind personally, and totally professional. He reminded me to be realistic about the eventual outcome, and advised me as to the importance of my demeanor and attitude.
Everyone I came in contact with at the office was polite and helpful, in particular Marisol Suarez, Mr. DiGirolamo’s paralegal assistant. I will always be grateful for the way my case was handled.
We hired Chris DiGirolamo as our attorney after Mike suffered a life changing injury at work. From the time we met Chris we felt we can trust him to work in the best interest for Mike’s needs. Chris is very down to earth and we felt comfortable whenever we met with him. He spoke to us so we always understood what was going on. He never threw around legal jargon that we would not be able to understand. He was always willing to ensure we knew exactly how our case was proceeding. Chris showed humanity in dealing with Mike’s Injuries and understanding of Mike’s unwillingness to accept some of the changes in his life.
Chris’s high level of energy and desire to bring a case to the best possible results were evident from day one. Our case was settled but of court with the help of a mediator and Chris was by our side explaining what was going on every step of the way. His preparation throughout the case was evident as he spoke before the mediator. It was a pleasure to watch. Chris at work and know he was working for us. He is tough and stubborn when necessary. We were also impressed by the respect shown to Chris by the retired judge we worked with as well as other lawyers. Chris was only happy with this case when he knew we had a settlement that we were very impressed with.
Do I Qualify for Workers’ Compensation in New York?
Employers purchase workers’ compensation insurance to cover costs if a worker is injured or gets sick on the job. Generally, workers’ comp benefits are available if you meet any of the following criteria:
- You are injured in an accident at your workplace
- You get sick or develop a medical condition as a result of your employment
- You are injured performing job duties at another location
- You are in a motor vehicle accident while traveling for work
- You are exposed to toxic or dangerous materials in the course of your work
It is important to note that workers’ compensation in New York is a no-fault system. You do not have to prove that anyone else’s negligence caused your work injury. (In fact, employers are generally immune from worker lawsuits if they carry the required workers’ comp insurance.)
That said, if your workplace was unsafe, if state and OSHA safety regulations were violated, and/or the carelessness of another caused you to get hurt on the job, it is important to understand the full extent of your rights. A New York City work injury lawyer can review your case for free and determine whether you have any additional claims.
Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi is a unique firm. We look at the intersection between New York personal injury law and workers’ compensation to identify all of our clients’ legal options and maximize the result.
Common Workplace Injuries
Workers can suffer a wide range of different injuries in the course of their employment or as a result of an accident. The New York City workers’ compensation lawyers at Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi are proud to represent construction workers and employees in many other industries who run the risk of serious injuries every day they are on the job.
Some of the most common injuries we see in workers’ compensation claims include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Injuries to the face and head
- Vision loss
- Hearing loss
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries, up to and including paralysis
- Organ damage
- Shoulder injuries
- Muscle, joint, tendon, and ligament injuries
- Injuries to the extremities, including the arms, hands, fingers, legs, and feet
- Knee injuries
- Ankle injuries
- Burn injuries
- Amputation injuries and loss of limbs and digits
You will need to prove that the injury or illness is related to your work to qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. As such, you need to seek medical care promptly and ensure that your complaint is fully documented (particularly as to the cause of the injury and how it affects your ability to work).
What Is Covered by Workers’ Compensation in New York?
The benefits available through workers’ comp depend in large part on the nature and severity of your injuries. A workers’ compensation attorney can review your claim and make sure that you are paid the benefits you deserve.
Potential benefits available under workers’ compensation in New York include:
- Health care benefits, including coverage of medical, dental, surgical, and vision care related to the work injury, as well as medications and assistive devices.
- Lost wage benefits (provided your reduced capacity to work or inability to work lasts longer than 7 days). Benefits for lost wages are categorized as follows:
- Temporary Partial Disability: Benefits for lost wages as a result of temporary partial disability are calculated at a rate of two-thirds of your average weekly wage multiplied by the percentage of your degree of disability, minus any wages you are able to earn working reduced hours or on modified assignment.
- Temporary Total Disability: Benefits are paid at a rate of two-thirds your average weekly wage. The degree of disability is 100%, so you are entitled to the maximum benefit for the duration of disability.
- Permanent Partial Disability: If your ability to work has been permanently impacted, your benefit is calculated at two-thirds of your average weekly wage multiplied by the degree of impairment. The number of weeks you qualify for permanent partial disability benefits depends on whether you suffer a schedule loss of use or non-schedule loss of use.
- Permanent Total Disability: You are entitled to payments totaling two-thirds of your average weekly wage for life.
- Survivor benefits are paid to the surviving spouse and/or surviving children and other dependents. Weekly cash benefits and funeral or memorial expenses are available.
It can be extremely difficult to know what benefits you are entitled to after a work-related injury or accident. What’s more, your employer, the insurance company, and even the state Workers’ Compensation Board do not have your best interest at heart.
At Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi, we are driven by the needs of our clients. We recognize the immense impact of a work injury, and our attorneys fight hard for the benefits and other compensation you and your family deserve.
Verdicts and Settlements
To a 35 year old iron worker who fell from a steel frame building under construction due to the failure of the general contractor to provide a safe workplace which included supervision for the use of safety equipment and guide wires.
Settlement under the New York Labor Law for a fall from a ladder by worker who suffered severe back injury.
Client 63 years old, was in the course of his employment as a driver for Benjamin Moore Paint and was doing his pre-drive inspection of his 18 wheel tractor trailer. It had snowed 8 inches about 3-4 days prior and the temperature had fluctuated above and below freezing, creating a melt, thaw and then refreeze in the parking lot where the tractor trailers were kept. It had…
What Percentage Do Workers’ Comp Lawyers Get in NY?
As with other types of personal injury cases, workers’ compensation claims are generally handled on a contingency basis. Claimants only pay attorney fees if a favorable result is achieved.
In New York, workers’ compensation lawyers are required to submit a request for fees to the state’s Workers’ Compensation Board. A judge will review the request and rule on the amount owed to the attorney. As a rule, New York workers’ compensation lawyers charge 15% of a settlement or award.
At Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi, our workers’ comp lawyers will provide you with detailed information upfront so you know how our fees are structured. Transparency is key, and we will ensure that you feel comfortable with the fee agreement before you hire us.
How Long Does It Take to Settle a Workers’ Comp Case in NY?
A settlement can be reached at any time during the process of appealing an adverse workers’ compensation decision. On average, it takes 6 months to 1 year to come to a workers’ comp settlement.
Workers in New York have two options for workers’ compensation settlements:
- Stipulation Agreement: Stipulations as to key details in your case (including what caused your work injury, the degree of disability, benefits you are owed, etc.) can be submitted to the Workers’ Compensation Board or to the judge presiding over a workers’ comp hearing. If all parties agree to the stipulations and the agreement is approved by the judge, a settlement will specify the benefits you are entitled to and how often they are paid.
- Section 32 Waiver Agreement: Alternatively, the parties may negotiate a settlement for a one-time lump sum payment or annuity (structured payments) that permanently settles your workers’ compensation claim. This type of settlement must conform to the rules laid out in New York Workers’ Compensation Law § 32 (hence the name).
- It is in your best interest to have a knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer negotiate the agreement on your behalf to ensure that the settlement (a) meets your current and future needs and (b) is likely to receive approval from the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board.
Our New York City workers’ compensation lawyers can discuss the options for settling your claim. Through careful review of your medical records and expert witness testimony, we can establish the severity of your injuries and how they will affect your life, as well as the compensation you are due for medical care and disability.
Can You Sue Your Employer in NYC?
As a rule, workers are typically limited to workers’ compensation if they get hurt on the job. Employers who carry workers’ comp insurance are immune from employee lawsuits unless the evidence shows that the employer intentionally caused the worker harm. This is extremely difficult to prove and, frankly, tends not to be the cause of most workplace accidents.
However, third parties may be held liable for workplace injuries and illnesses. Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi has represented workers in construction accidents and other job-related accidents involving:
- Contractor and subcontractor negligence
- Premises liability (i.e., negligence of a property owner and/or occupant of premises where you are working)
- Defective products
- Careless motorists (additional compensation may be recovered through a car accident claim if you are seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident while on the job)
New York has also enacted laws that impose strict liability on owners, contractors, and agents when it comes to safety equipment and procedures on work sites. Under a strict liability standard, you do not have to prove that the party in question was negligent; liability for injuries and damages is established simply by showing that the party or parties were responsible for certain sections or activities on the job site.
One example of this is New York Labor Law § 240, which places strict liability on contractors and owners for the provision of scaffolding to workers engaged in construction and related jobs. In the event of a scaffolding accident, workers can bring claims against the owner or contractor even if they satisfy all of the conditions found in NY Labor Law 240.
Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi is a rare law firm. In addition to pursuing the full benefits you are entitled to under workers’ compensation, we also investigate your right to damages for a work injury from negligent third parties.
Year after year, our attorneys have been recognized as the best by many different legal organizations and publications, including Super Lawyers, U.S. News & World Report, and more. Our partners are members of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an honor conferred solely on attorneys who secure verdicts and settlements of more than $1 million on behalf of clients.
Please call Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi at (212) 543-1600 today for a free case review. Our workers’ compensation lawyers serve clients in Manhattan and all of New York City, as well as other areas of New York.