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Legal Pitfalls to Avoid in New York Workers' Compensation Claims


Successfully pursuing a workers' compensation claim in New York requires a comprehensive understanding of the legal terrain. At Schotter Millican, LLP, we recognize the complexities individuals face when navigating these claims. In this blog post, we shed light on potential legal pitfalls to help you avoid complications in your workers' compensation journey.

Timely Reporting: The Foundation of a Strong Case

One common pitfall in workers' compensation claims is a failure to report the injury promptly. New York law mandates that employees notify their employer within 30 days of the incident. Failure to adhere to this timeline may jeopardize the validity of the claim. Our experience underscores the importance of swift and accurate reporting to establish a solid foundation for your case.

Medical Documentation: A Cornerstone for Compensation

Comprehensive medical documentation is crucial in substantiating the nature and extent of your injuries. Incomplete or inconsistent medical records can undermine the credibility of your claim. It is imperative to seek prompt medical attention, follow treatment plans diligently, and maintain open communication with healthcare providers. This ensures a clear link between the workplace incident and the injuries sustained.

Employer Cooperation: Navigating Employer Resistance

Some employers may resist workers' compensation claims, viewing them as potential threats to their insurance premiums. However, employers must promptly report injuries to their insurance carriers under New York law. If your employer attempts to discourage you from filing a claim or fails to cooperate, it is essential to consult with legal professionals who can guide you through the process.

Understanding Eligibility Criteria: Not Every Injury Qualifies

Not all workplace injuries qualify for workers' compensation benefits. Understanding the eligibility criteria is crucial to avoiding disappointment and wasted effort. Injuries that result from willful misconduct, intoxication, or actions outside the scope of employment may not be covered. Seeking legal counsel early on can help you determine the viability of your claim based on the specific circumstances of your case.

Return to Work Issues: Balancing Recovery and Employment

While workers' compensation provides financial support during recovery, it raises concerns about returning to work. Employers may attempt to expedite your return, sometimes prematurely. It is essential to prioritize your health and follow medical advice. If faced with pressure to return before you are ready, consulting legal professionals can help safeguard your rights and ensure a balanced approach to recovery and employment.

Appealing Denied Claims: Pursuing Your Rightful Compensation

Claim denials can be disheartening, but they are not the end of the road. New York provides avenues for appealing denied claims. Understanding the reasons for denial, gathering additional evidence, and adhering to appeal timelines are crucial steps in overturning a denial. Legal guidance becomes invaluable in navigating the appeals process effectively.

Third-Party Liability: Exploring Additional Avenues

Sometimes, a third party, separate from your employer, may be responsible for your workplace injury. Pursuing third-party liability claims alongside workers' compensation claims is a complex but potentially rewarding strategy. Legal professionals can assess the circumstances surrounding your injury and determine if a third party may be held accountable.

Empowering Your Workers' Compensation Journey

Successfully navigating the legal landscape of New York workers' compensation claims demands diligence, knowledge, and timely action. At Schotter Millican, LLP, we recognize individuals' challenges and offer this insight to empower your journey. By avoiding common pitfalls and seeking legal guidance when needed, you can confidently navigate the complexities of workers' compensation.

Contact Schotter Millican, LLP, today to learn more!

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