Benefits are available for job-related injuries, but not everyone fully understands workers’ compensation. Questions often arise about qualifying events, application deadlines and how long an employee can receive pay for time away from work.
Fault is another common concern among employees. For example, you might wonder whether you could file a workers’ compensation claim if you caused an accident that resulted in injuries.
If those concerns resonate with you, here are three things you should know:
- Workers’ compensation doesn’t consider blame. New York requires most employers to have workers’ compensation insurance for their workforce. Benefits may include medical attention and wage replacement due to work-related illnesses and injuries. If you get injured or become ill due to safety concerns on the job, you can file a claim without worrying about whether you should’ve done something differently. Once you apply for benefits, you can focus on recovery and your return to work.
- Your employer cannot charge you for workers’ compensation. Regardless of who’s at fault for a workplace incident, workers’ compensation is an insurance plan provided through your employer. As such, fees may not be assessed.
- It may be possible to hold negligent co-workers accountable. Workers’ compensation coverage also typically applies to situations in which injuries resulted from a colleague’s behavior. If circumstances exclude benefits, there may be other ways to recover damages. When applicable, an attorney can help you establish a clear, direct connection between another worker’s conduct and the resultant injuries.
Although you have the right to a safe workplace, unforeseen risks can quickly become dangerous. Given the variables that may influence outcomes, you should seek legal counsel to help you understand your options. No matter what happened, or who’s at fault, you need to protect your interests.