The concept of a statute of limitations is fairly common knowledge for most people. Even if someone is not aware of exactly what the statute of limitations for any given legal issue is, the fact that a statute may exist is not lost on most people. Criminal acts such as drug possession or homicide have statutes of limitations, and personal injuries such as car accidents also have statutes of limitations. However, did you know that workers’ compensation claims have them too?

We often talk about how issues of workers’ compensation are relatively easy to resolve, with some insurance companies even making offers before a claim is even formally brought. However, what you may not know is that statutes of limitations apply to workers’ compensation claims as well, so if you are injured on the job, you should pursue compensation with a sense of urgency.

The statute of limitations for workers’ compensation claims in New York is two years, but the date at which the countdown begins is subject to change. There are two factors that determine when the clock starts counting down: date of injury or date of last payment. Whichever of these two dates is later will be the date from which you have two years to file a claim before the statute expires.

Depending on the circumstances and the severity of your injury, you may be surprised at how quickly two years goes by. This is especially true if your injuries do not fully manifest themselves immediately. You may think that you do not need to file a workers’ compensation claim because your injury is not very severe, but then two years later you find that the injuries led to complications that have changed your life. If you are injured on the job, it is in your best interests to meet with an attorney as soon as possible to take action before your statute expires.