Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About New York Workers Compensation Benefits
Here is a list of some of the most common questions to ask a worker’s comp lawyer along with our answers.
How long will my Workers Comp case last?
The case is a reflection of your injuries. The case will continue being active until your doctor discharges you from treatment and tells you that your condition is as good as it’s going to get.
When can I settle my case?
Settlements can occur at any time. Usually we have to wait between six months to one year after the injury or after surgery in order to know how much permanent damage you have suffered. This is what determines how much money you’ll be entitled to in a settlement.
Can I work while my case is going on?
Yes, definitely. You are encouraged to return to your regular job either full time or part time, or to any other job that you can physically handle. If you earn less money than you did at the time you were injured, you will get weekly workers comp money to compensate you for the loss of your earnings.
How do Workers Comp attorneys get paid?
All attorney fees for workers compensation claims must be approved by the Judge. If there is a hearing where the Judge orders the insurance company to continue weekly payments, the attorney usually gets 1/2 of the first week’s payment as a fee. If there is a settlement of the case, the usual fee is about 15% of the settlement amount but it must be approved by the Judge.
Does changing attorneys affect my case?
Not at all, unless the prior attorney was not doing his job. We have taken over many cases that have gone off track for many reasons and gotten them back on track towards a successful conclusion. You, the injured worker, do not pay any more in attorney fees if you switch attorneys. The fees are divided between the two attorneys either by agreement or by the Judge.
Can I get money for my injury even if I go back to work?
For arm, hand, finger, hip, knee, ankle, foot, vision and hearing loss injuries the answer is yes. If you suffer a permanent injury to any part of an extremity, or to your vision or hearing, you will get a lump sum of money even if you’ve been able to return to work. Unfortunately, this does not apply to neck and back injuries, where you only get paid for the time you actually lose from work.
Is Workers Compensation money taxable?
No. Workers Compensation money is non-taxable because it compensates the injured worker for an injury. It is not considered income for tax purposes.
Can the insurance company cut off my payments?
If you’ve been to a hearing and the Judge has fixed your weekly payment amount then the answer is “no.” The insurance company must request a hearing and convince the Judge to lower your payments. But if you have not yet been to a first hearing then yes, the insurance company can reduce or stop your payments for several different reasons.
What happens if I disagree with the Judge’s Decision in my case?
We can file an appeal. It usually takes up to six months to get a Decision on an appeal, but appealing a workers compensation decision can overturn the Judge’s Decision if it is wrong.
Can I sue the person who causes my work injury?
Yes, as long as that person is not your employer. If you are injured in the course of your employment by a person not related to your employer you can sue that person in Court along with having a workers comp claim against your employer.
Where do I go to get my other workman’s comp questions answered?
Come talk to us, of course! Get a free lawyer consultation online from Robert Golan, PC of Golan & Masiakos, LLP or give us a call at 516-586-3910 to get any other of your questions answered.