Workplace injuries are incredibly commonplace in all types of workspaces in New York City. Whether you work at a construction site in the Bronx, in a restaurant in Brooklyn, in an office in Manhattan, across the river in New Jersey, or almost anywhere else you can think of, if you are injured on the job, you have a right to workers’ compensation.
Unfortunately, because workplace injuries are so common in New York, employers are generally looking for ways out of paying for worker’s compensation benefits. Many employers, but particularly those who get hit with workers’ compensation lawsuits on a regular basis, have developed tricks to give them an edge up in the workers’ comp. recovery process. As employment lawyers, we see these tricks often, and they tend to make legal recovery much harder, if not impossible, for injured employees.
We want to spread the word to employees across the five boroughs and across the river to help them keep watch for the clever legal maneuvers that employers use to limit their own liability. In our experience, these are the top five most common and damaging workers’ comp. tricks to know about.
Employers will try to get you to sign documents about your injury
Do not sign anything before you have an experienced attorney read it over carefully. Often, what may look like a simple supervisor’s’ accident report or a medical document is really intended to trick you into signing away your right to recover workers’ comp. If you do not want to go through the process of hiring an attorney at that stage, at least read everything carefully and skeptically before signing.
The company doctor is not out to get you, but his bosses are
Doctors are generally good people and they care about treating you. After an injury at work, it is not uncommon for your employer to provide onsite medical treatment or to send you to a doctor they know.
Keep in mind though, that the company doctor’s report will serve as the basis for an insurance report. If you can physically do so, you should go to a doctor you trust first.
If the injury is not reported, it did not happen
Often, injured employees may forget to file a formal injury report with supervisors or other employees may even discourage reporting.
But if you fail to report your injury, however, it is easier for an employer to deny that it ever happened.
They start the litigation process early, and so should you
Immediately after an accident an employer’s lawyers or workers’ comp. insurance lawyers will take witness interviews and gather evidence. You should either do the same, or hire an attorney to do it for you. Witnesses memories fade, and the conditions at the jobsite may change if you wait to document what happened.
The blame game
Employers will commonly try to pin the cause of the injury on something the employee did wrong. They may investigate your past work history for faults, write biased reports, or even try to intimidate employees into dropping the claim.
For more questions about workers’ compensation or employment law in either New York or New Jersey, contact the Law Offices of Yuriy Moshes. We offer free consultations for all new clients. Our law firm has three offices, two in New York City (Brooklyn and Manhattan) and one in West Orange, New Jersey. You can contact us through our website at https://mosheslaw.com/ or by calling (888) 445-0234.