Many workers who get hurt on the job in New York do not immediately notify their employer or file for workers’ compensation insurance benefits. Some people worry that filing a claim could affect their employment status. Others just feel that the claims process is a hassle they do not need in their life.
If you have good health insurance from your employer and have paid time off (PTO) benefits, you may feel like workers’ compensation is not necessary for you. However, the program exists for a reason, and it is almost always in a worker’s best interests to file a claim for benefits after they suffer an injury on the job.
Deductibles vs. complete coverage
When you go to the doctor and use your medical insurance, you have certain financial responsibilities as a patient. Insurance companies expect people receiving medical care to pay a certain amount out of pocket and meet a deductible before the company covers all their treatments.
It is also common for insurance policies to have coinsurance requirements, meaning you will have to pay a percentage of the total cost of your care. You will also possibly have a deductible to pay every time you have an appointment or fill a prescription.
Workers’ compensation in New York offers complete coverage for necessary medical treatment. You will not have to pay anything out of your own pocket for care that is causally related to your work-related injury.
Workers’ comp benefits vs. using PTO
If you have accumulated several weeks of PTO, it may seem like a great idea to use those benefits now while you recover from your injury.
If you receive workers’ compensation, you can potentially get lost-wage benefits if you need an extended leave of absence. Short-term benefits can cover up to two-thirds of your average weekly wage while recovering to the point of a return to work. Also, should your injury result in a permanent disability, then further benefits are available.
Although filing for workers’ compensation can be a hassle that requires professional help, the benefits protect you and the people you love. Getting support with the workers’ compensation application can take a lot of the hassle out of the process and allow you to focus more of your effort on recovery after you get injured at work.
Seeking the help of an experienced workers’ compensation law firm can help in determining whether the employer and insurance carrier appropriately handled your claim consistent with the law in the state where you were injured.