File Immediately to Maintain Right to Workers' Compensation in New York

If you are injured in the workplace in New York, filing paperwork for workers' compensation may be the last thing you want to address. However, putting an employer on notice about a workplace injury and filing an employee claim with the New York State Workers' Compensation Board is crucial. Employees who wait to file may waive their right to workers' compensation.

In New York, the timeline to file a workers' compensation claim is generally dependent on the type of injury: immediate or latent. If an employee suffers an immediate injury or illness related to the workplace, a written claim should be filed with the employer as soon as possible, and no longer than 30 days after the injury. A written claim should also be filed immediately with the New York Workers' Compensation Board.

Often workers suffer injuries or illnesses that appear over time, and those injuries are referred to as latent job-related injuries or illnesses. Examples of latent injury or illness claims include illnesses associated with asbestos, silica, mold or carcinogens. Employees who suffer job-related injuries or illnesses that are latent generally must submit their workers' compensation claim within two years of when they knew or should have known about the injury or illness. Employees who fail to file for workers' compensation within two years of discovering an injury may lose their right to compensation.

Appeals of worker's compensation decisions are also subject to time limits. If a worker is not satisfied with the judge's determination, the worker may appeal the decision by written request within 30 days of when the determination was made. A three-member panel comprised of Workers' Compensation Board members reviews the decision of the judge. If the worker disagrees with the panel's decision, the worker has 30 days to file a written appeal with the Appellate Division, Third Department, Supreme Court of the State of New York. The decision by the Appellate Division may be appealed to the Court of Appeals.

To safeguard their workers' compensation rights, employees should be aware of timelines that apply to their case.

To avoid issues with your right to workers' compensation, contact an experienced workers' comp attorney to review your legal options.