No employer wants to have their workers injured on the job. An injured worker can lead to lawsuits, a loss in worker productivity and lower profits. In addition, many employers feel bad about accidents that happen in their working environment as workers have to deal with pain from their injuries and medical bills.
In the state of New York, employers have rights and responsibilities when it comes to offering workers’ compensation to employees. These rights and responsibilities are governed by the New York State Worker’s Compensation Board. Look over the following information so your employer is following the guidelines established in regards to employer’s workers’ compensation rights and responsibilities.
Employer’s Rights When Offering Workers’ Compensation
Dealing with False Claims
Employers attempt to protect their businesses from false workers’ compensation claims and from paying claims that are not covered by their insurance. An employer does have the right for the insurance company to contest a claim when a worker is seeking compensation. They also have the right to electronically access the case file for the worker’s compensation claim that the Worker’s Compensation Board possesses.
Presence During the Hearings Regarding Claims
Another right that the employer has is to attend all hearings in regards to the claim as well as seek a review of the Board’s decision in regards to the worker’s compensation claims if the employer offers insurance. The employer may also ask for an administrative review or an appeal through the Appellate Division when they disagree with the claim decision made by the Worker’s Compensation Board. If the employer has evidence that an employee is fraudulently seeking compensation, they have a right to report this activity to the Fraud Inspector General.
For employers who fail to offer workers’ compensation coverage to employees, or who are self-insured, they also have the right to attend any hearings held by the Worker’s Compensation Board when deciding on a worker’s compensation claim. The employer can bring any evidence that deals with disputed issues which are discussed during the hearing.
Employer’s Responsibilities When Offering Workers’ Compensation
New York law requires almost all employees to offer workers’ compensation coverage to eligible employees when operating a business in the state. The insurance that is offered must come from an insurance carrier. The employer can self-insure employees if they receive authorization from the Worker’s Compensation Board. There cannot be any lapse in coverage, even if the employer decides to change insurance coverage policies or switch to a different insurance provider.
Once the employer obtains insurance coverage for employees, they will obtain a form from the carrier. The employer must post the workers’ compensation coverage notice for employees to see. If providing self-insurance, the employer can obtain the form from the Worker’s Compensation Board, or from the group administrator if they plan to participate in offering employees group self-insurance.
The Worker’s Compensation Board may ask to see all records, books and payrolls about employees. An employer must provide these documents and records upon request. The provided information must be accurate for up to four years. If the records are not accurate, the employer may face fines and other penalties.
If an employee is injured or gets an illness at work, the employer has to file the necessary reports to all applicable parties. They must report the accident to the insurance carrier within 10 days. The employer must also report the injured employees’ wages, other compensation, and changes to the injured employee’s work status and pay to the Worker’s Compensation Board. An employer cannot discriminate against any employee if they try to claim worker’s compensation or they have their claimed approved.
When creating company documents, the employer has to maintain records about any injury or illness that a worker may obtain during their course of employment even if the injury isn’t required to be reported to the Worker’s Compensation Board. If the injury or illness needs to be reported to the Board, a First Injury Report must be created and maintained by the employer who has to present it to the Board for review upon request.
Obtaining Workers’ Compensation from Your Employer
There are employees who are not covered by workers’ compensation regulations in the state of New York. Workers who won’t receive compensation may be babysitters under the age of 14 or minors that offer casual employment services to one family. Railroad employees, longshoremen, harbor workers, people who offer yard work or household chores to a one-family residence, and clergymen also will not receive workers’ compensation for injuries or illnesses. Domestic employees are also not covered by workers’ compensation coverage if they work less than 40 hours per week, and if they are municipality workers or employees working in political subdivisions that aren’t involved with hazardous employment. Lastly, employers do not offer compensation to police officers, uniformed sanitation workers, or firefighters who are under employment to the city of New York.
If you are injured or become ill at work, you are entitled to compensation. Unfortunately, the workers’ compensation claim process can be confusing, as the employer or the insurance company will try to deny your claim. Seek legal representation from Paul Giannetti Attorney at Law. Contact our office today so we can help you with your compensation claim.