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Understanding Workers Compensation and the ADA

Those who have suffered a work injury, whether mental or physical, may be afforded additional workers' compensation protections other than those offered by the state of New York under the ADA. The ADA, or the Americans with Disabilities Act, has, since 1990, existed as a civil rights and liberties law that, according to the EEOC website, offers protections to citizens with disabilities in ways considered fair and equal under the law. This includes protecting against discrimination, such as discrimination in availability of public services, access to employment, access to telecommunications services and access to accommodations.

How does this impact a New York workers' compensation case? If an employee's injury led to a temporary or permanent disability but that employee is still able to return to work, he or she may require the protections of the ADA to prevent any discrimination or unfair treatment on the job, as these instances could either compound an existing claim or lead to a new claim. According to the New York Bar Association, on returning to work after an injury an employee is protected from discrimination as long as he or she is able to perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodations made on the part of the employer for the employee's disability.

Protections under the ADA ensure that employers cannot change their employment practices to discriminate against workers in terms of pay, hiring, firing, promotions, training, vacation or other general rights as an employee so long as that employer has fifteen or more employees. Should an employer make any changes to a worker's terms of employment impacted by that worker's disability and affecting these conditions, the employee is protected not only by New York labor law but by the federal ADA in the event of pursuing a claim.

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Success Stories

  • A 43 year old ironworker who fell four stories and sustained injuries to his ankle while installing a staircase settled his claim for $1,500,000.00. The accident was due to the failure of the building owner and general contractor to provide a safe place to work.
  • A construction worker operating an asphalt roller settled his case for $525,000.00 when the edge of the roadway he was paving collapsed into a trench being dug by a subcontractor causing him to sustain injuries to his leg.
  • A 54 year old commuter settled his case against the NYCTA for $1,200,000.00. when he tripped and fell on a subway platform due to the pavement being in disrepair, causing him to fall forward and to strike his head on a train pulling into the station.
  • The estate of a 64 year old woman received a settlement of $425,000.00 after she was struck and killed by a speeding tractor trailer while crossing the street at the intersection of Richmond Terrace and Port Richmond Avenue.
  • A $1,200,000.00 settlement was reached on behalf of a 54 year old man from Staten Island, New York, who, while in the course of his employment as a bus driver, was rear-ended on the Garden State Parkway and caused to suffer injuries to his back and neck as well as a fractured rib and fractured pelvis.
  • A 47-year-old building superintendent who sustained injuries to his head and right side of his body due to a tripping hazard at his job site received a settlement of $300,000.00 from the electrical company performing work at the site.
  • A 43 year old construction worker was caused to sustain injuries to his back, shoulder and hand when the elevator he was riding malfunctioned and dropped 8 floors. He received $350,000.00 in the settlement of his claim against the building owner, maintenance company and elevator company.
  • The administrator of the estate of a 69 year old man who suffered stage four pressure sores while a patient at a Queens nursing home settled the case for $400,000.00 after the man died.
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Phone: 347-201-4447
Phone: 718-816-0005
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Phone: 347-201-4447
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