New York laws and regulations require that most employers carry workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation insurance provides coverage in the event that a covered employee is injured on the job. The purpose of carrying workers’ compensation insurance is twofold: it protects employers from being bankrupted by a large verdict, and it provides a faster way for injured workers to receive benefits after an incident. Rather than go through a trial in the notoriously slow court system, workers’ compensation claims are handled by a separate entity.
However, there are caps on the amount of damages an injured employee may receive under New York’s workers’ compensation laws. A special formula is used to calculate the amount of benefits an injured employee may receive. The formula takes two-thirds of the employee’s average weekly wage and multiplies that by the percent the claimant is disabled. For example, someone who was earning $400 per week and is 50% may be entitled to $133.34 each week in workers’ compensation benefits.
Every July 1, new limits are established that provide a maximum benefit amount that injured workers may receive. Currently, the maximum is $864.32. Therefore, even if, using the formula above, you are entitled to $1000 per week, the most you would receive is $864.32.
Many employees incorrectly assume that workers’ compensation is the sole remedy available for injuries suffered while working. However, workers’ compensation benefits cover the negligence or wrongdoing of an employer or coworker. It does not address the negligence or wrongdoing of a third party. Therefore, if your injury was caused by an unrelated third party, you are not limited by the caps on workers’ compensation awards.
What types of third parties may be responsible for injuries on a construction site? General contractors, the owners of a construction site, contractors that hire subcontractors for specific jobs, contractors that operate certain types of equipment (such as tractors, cranes, etc.), and a number of other individuals are all examples of third parties who may be responsible for construction site injuries.
Construction sites require dozens, even hundreds, of workers. These workers must carefully work together and ensure that all safety regulations are being followed to maintain safety. When a construction site worker is injured, the negligence of several individuals is often to blame. Determining whether New York’s workers’ compensation laws apply to your injury claim requires an analysis by an experienced injury attorney. At Cohen & Jaffe, our attorneys have represented injured construction workers both in workers’ compensation claims and in civil claims. We understand how to analyze the facts of your claim to determine who is liable.
If you were injured on a construction site, let the attorneys at the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP help. We aggressively pursue all avenues of recovery so that you obtain the compensation you deserve. To schedule your free consultation, call 866-878-6774 or fill out our no obligation form at www.cohenjaffe.com.