What to do When You Get Hurt
October 26, 2011
By Robert Grey
You just got hurt at work. You lifted something and felt a pain in your back. You were struck by a car. You tripped and fell and twisted your knee.
More than 150,000 workers are injured in New York every year – that’s more than 400 on-the-job accidents every day. Their injuries are covered by workers’ compensation, but many workers have difficulty getting benefits. Here are five things you can do to help your claim go smoothly.
Step One: Report the Accident
You need to report the accident to your supervisor and fill out an accident report. Your employer is required by law to fill out a form called a C-2 form and to send it to its insurance company and to the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. This notifies the insurance company and the Board that you were injured and starts the process moving.
If your employer reports the claim quickly, and agrees that you were hurt on the job, that can go a long way towards getting you paid faster for time out of work. If you don’t report the accident immediately, it is more likely that the insurance company will contest (or “controvert”) your case. If the insurance company controverts your case, it will take much longer for you to get benefits.
Step Two: File a Claim
You need to file a claim with the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board, using a C-3 claim form. Filling out the accident report or telling your employer that you got hurt is not filing a claim; you must also complete and file a C-3 form. The Workers’ Compensation Board is different from the insurance company. Some insurance companies will tell you that they are calling “from Compensation,” and others have names that sound official (like the “New York State Insurance Fund” or the “Workers’ Compensation Division of the New York City Law Department”). However, they are on the other side of your claim, and don’t make the final decision. The Workers’ Compensation Board is the State agency that decides workers’ compensation claims. Either you or the insurance company can ask the Board to rule on any disputes, such as whether you are entitled to benefits, or the amount of the benefits.
Where do I get a C-3 form? If you call Grey & Grey, we will send you all of the papers you need. You can also get a C-3 form from the Workers’ Compensation Board.
Step Three: See a Doctor
You need to see a doctor who knows about workers’ compensation. You can see any doctor you want, as long as that doctor is coded by the Workers’ Compensation Board. When you see the doctor, the doctor must fill out a C-4.0 form. The C-4.0 form is necessary to prove that you got hurt on the job and that you are disabled.
How can I find a doctor? Your union or Grey & Grey can refer you to a doctor who takes workers’ compensation cases.
Step Four: Call the Union
You should tell your union that you were hurt on the job. The union contract may provide you with additional benefits beyond standard workers’ compensation payments. In addition, the union should be aware of work hazards that are injuring its members.
Step Five: Call Grey & Grey
You should call Grey & Grey, LLP so that we can help you with your case. Even if you think you have been paid in full, we can help you get your time restored, and there may be other benefits you are entitled to. We will make sure that you get what you deserve.
How do I reach Grey & Grey? Manhattan: (212) 964-1342 Queens: (718) 268-5300 Long Island: (516) 249-1342