Leveraging Compromises in the New York Workers’ Compensation System

Compromises are a vital and frequent part of the workers’ compensation litigation process. However, one should take care to avoid negotiating them out of habit. With two doctors giving irreconcilable opinions, parties will often agree to split benefits straight down the middle in lieu of litigation. Sometimes, such as when both parties concede partial disability and are within a close margin, this is a helpful way to allay costs of
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Missing Check: The Status of the Law

Oftentimes, when parties in a workers’ compensation matter agree to settle or when the claimant is entitled to certain indemnity benefits, the carrier sends payment to the claimant by mailing a check to an address provided by the claimant. There are situations, though, when the check goes missing or is stolen, perhaps in transit or at the address provided by the claimant. This begs the question – what are the
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The Effect of Immigration on New York Workers’ Compensation

New York state has one of the largest undocumented immigrant populations in the nation, coming in fourth behind Texas, California, and Florida. According to the most recent study taken by Pew Research Center in 2016, 725,000 unauthorized immigrants lived in New York state. Although it is illegal for employers to hire immigrant workers who are not documented and authorized to work in the United States, whether it is intentional or
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Construction Sites, Injured Contractors & Workers’ Compensation

In Connecticut, the “traditional” rules of workers’ compensation are relatively well established. A restaurant employee cuts his finger preparing food on shift; a home health aide pulls a muscle in her back while moving a patient on shift; a delivery truck driver gets into a motor vehicle accident while delivering to a customer. But what if you are a contractor or subcontractor on a job/site and get injured? Do you
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Causal Relationship for Preauthorized Surgeries: Questioning Causality

It is easy to accept preauthorized surgeries as a foregone conclusion where the site of surgery is established and the procedure is approved by the Medical Treatment Guidelines. However, it shouldn’t be. Earlier in 2019, Goldberg Segalla’s workers’ compensation team won an appeal on this very issue. The claimant underwent preauthorized left shoulder surgery on a file established to the left shoulder for an injury that occurred in 2016. However,
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The Biggest Loser: How to Handle Requests for Causally Related Bariatric Bypass Surgery

Under the New York State workers’ compensation law, an employer or carrier “shall promptly provide for an injured employee such medical, surgical, optometric or other attendance of treatment . . . for such period as the nature of the injury or the process of recovery may require.”  This is a pretty general requirement, but it opens the door to a new question: what happens when an injured worker requires back
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Employer Reimbursement for a Salary Continuation Plan

New York State Workers’ Compensation Law (WCL) Section 25 governs how compensation is paid under a workers’ compensation claim. WCL Section 25(4)(a) was designed to encourage employers to continue wage payments to workers during periods of work-related disability by providing the employers with a statutorily protected source of repayment. Landgrebe v. County of Westchester, 453 N.Y.S.2d 413 (1982). WCL Section 25(4)(a) allows an employer to recover reimbursement for payments made
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Credit on SLU Payments and Recovery of a Third-Party Action Lien: Why They Live Together in Perfect Harmony

In New York, Workers’ Compensation Law Section 15(4-a) provides a carrier the right to take a credit against a subsequently determined schedule award for disability payments that have already been received for the same injury. This is relatively common knowledge in the world of workers’ compensation, and this credit is never met with much pushback from claimant’s counsel – unless, of course, a third-party action is involved. Under Workers’ Compensation
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Raising Self-Limitation on Reduced Earnings: A New Approach

How many times has your attorney heard this whispered after raising labor market attachment:  “Just go get any job out there and they’ll pay you the difference – any job will do.” If you work two hours a week, you’re attached and owed reduced earnings. This scenario came up during a recent litigation on the issue of labor market attachment and entitlement to awards. In that case, the claimant’s attorney
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Conflict Over Neutral Risk Work Injuries

Neutral risk injuries have become a contentious topic in Illinois Workers’ Compensation law. In Illinois Senate Bill 12, the legislature attempted to codify recent trends that courts have taken by calling for an analysis of whether an injured worker’s employment quantitatively or qualitatively contributes to a neutral risk to determine a compensable injury. The First District Appellate Court of Illinois applied these factors in Noonan v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission
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