According to the Workers’ Compensation Board, hearings are scheduled in a timely fashion. However, in reality there can be lengthy delays between the time a hearing is requested and the date it is actual heard.
We know this from 20 years of dealing with the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. The Board supposedly prioritizes certain types of cases but there really is no rhyme or reason as to how long it takes to get a hearing. It has been our experience that the Board does not give priority to those injured workers who have no income or whose weekly rate of compensation is much lower than the claimant believes it should be.
The current composition of the Board, in our experience, seems to give the insurance carriers preference in scheduling quick hearings when requested. Perhaps that is a function of the current political climate.
In all fairness, one area where the Workers’ Compensation Board has improved is the expedited hearing process. If your case can be heard on an expedited calendar, it can move through the initial portion of litigation rather quickly. Unfortunately, expedited hearings only cover a very small portion of the overall caseload.
How Long Will My Workers’ Compensation Hearing Take?
New York State Workers’ Compensation hearings generally do not take a long time. Unless a hearing is scheduled for extensive testimony or complicated issues, a hearing will generally take between five and twenty minutes.
Unfortunately, hearings are rarely called at the scheduled time. It is not uncommon for claimant’s to wait for over an hour and sometimes longer for their case to be called.
If you have been injured at work and have a pending claim in the Albany/Capital District area of New York State, we would be happy to discuss your claim with you.