What Is the General Municipal Law Section 207?
The General Municipal Law Section 207 provides special protection to Municipal Firefighters and Police Officers, including sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, corrections officers, detectives, and other investigators, injured in the performance of their duties. These are known as Section 207-c benefits.
The special protection allows for these Municipal employees to receive their full wages so long as they are physically disabled from performing their regular job duties. These wage benefits are typically greater than what an injured worker could receive through workers’ compensation insurance.
In addition to full-lost wages, covered employees are entitled to causally related medical treatment.
How Municipal Workers Can Receive These Benefits
For municipal workers to receive Section 207-c benefits, they must show that there is a direct causal relationship between their job duties and the injury or illness. They also must show that the injury or illness occurred while they were actually performing their duties and not simply when they were at work.
Whether or not a worker shall receive Section 207-c benefits is made in accordance with a collective bargaining agreement or by the relevant municipality.
Workers’ Compensation vs. Section 207-c Benefits
Workers’ Compensation benefits are different than Section 207-c benefits. Workers’ compensation is broad insurance coverage meant to cover all eligible employees’ worker-related injuries and illnesses. Section 207-c benefits are for specific types of workers only and are for injuries or illnesses incurred because of the special work these employees do and the high risks they face.
It is also possible for a Municipal employee to be covered under the Workers’ Compensation Law but not the General Municipal Law. A municipal employee may be injured while on duty, thereby covered by workers’ comp. However, the municipality may find that the employee was not injured during the performance of their special work, in which case the employee is not entitled to Section 207-c benefits.
In some instances, certain employees may be entitled to both Workers’ Compensation benefits and benefits under the General Municipal Law Section 207. However, there are limits to the extent of wage replacement that can be received between the two sources.