5 myths about workers’ comp
New York construction workers hear so many things about workers’ comp that are simply not true. These lies are spread at worksites throughout the city and when workers start believing them, they miss out on important benefits that can help them when they’re injured.
We’re setting the record straight and exposing 5 common myths about workers’ comp to help our city’s workers get the benefits they deserve:
MYTH 1: The accident was my fault so I’m not eligible for workers’ comp.
FACT: It doesn’t matter if you made a mistake or didn’t follow safety rules – workers’ comp is a no-fault system. As long as your accident was at work, you should be covered. The few exceptions only apply under extreme circumstances like drinking on the job.
If your boss or company has told you that you can’t file for workers’ comp because your accident was your fault, they are breaking the law. An attorney can help make things right.
MYTH 2: I can be fired for filing for workers’ comp
FACT: It’s against the law for your boss to retaliate against you for filing for workers’ comp. If this has happened to you, you may have legal options.
MYTH 3: To get workers’ comp I must sue my employer.
FACT: This is completely false. Filing for workers’ comp is just filing a claim with your job’s insurance. The money comes from the insurance company and you are not serving your job with a lawsuit. In fact, getting workers’ comp means that you can’t sue your employer.
Injured construction workers do have the option to speak to an attorney and file a lawsuit against building owners or contractors for negligence, pain and suffering or more. But, this is completely optional, separate from workers’ comp and does not affect your employer.
MYTH 4: I have to talk to insurance company reps and sign their documents or I won’t get my benefits.
FACT: This is false and we highly advise against it. The insurance companies will send nurse case managers, investigators and claim adjustors, all who will seem kind, caring and official, to pry information from you. They will also send confusing and misleading forms.
Keep in mind their end goal is to get away with paying you less and that anything you tell them will be used against you. Refusing to speak with them will not affect the benefits you are entitled to.
Myth 5: I don’t need my own lawyer because my employer, union lawyer or the workers’ comp board will fight to get me the maximum payout.
FACT: It often takes an injury for workers to see how the system leads everyone to look out for themselves.
Your company will file the paperwork required by law, but they are not going out of their way to fight their own insurance company on your behalf.
The workers’ comp board is there to process claims, not fight for each individual worker. It can take several tries for them to even approve a person’s workers’ comp claim. And, union lawyers are hired to protect the union as a whole, not just you.
The only person that is dedicated to protecting your rights after a construction accident is a personal work injury lawyer, like the attorneys we have here at Giampa Law. We are a family business that has been helping injured workers here in the Bronx for almost 40 years.
We know the myths from the facts. We know who you should and shouldn’t talk to. And we know how to take you down the best path for maximum compensation. Contact us for your free consultation today.