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Is your employer required to carry workers' compensation?

If you are an employee in New York and you injure yourself on the job or contract a job-related illness, there is a good chance your employer is responsible to pay for your expenses through its workers' compensation insurance. There are some exceptions to carrying these benefits, but most employers must provide them for all employees.

According to the New York State Workers' Compensation Board, the state requires almost all businesses to have workers' compensation. This includes for-profit and non-profit companies as well as state employers. There are a few exceptions and they include sole proprietorships and partnerships that do not have any employees or volunteers. Keep in mind that independent contractors are not employees, so if you are a contract worker you are not eligible to collect benefits for on-the-job injuries.  

If your employer has workers' compensation, what does it cover? The Chron discusses the types of benefits a hurt worker may receive. These include:

  • Expenses related to doctor, hospital and therapy visits for treatment
  • Weekly payments to replace loss of income
  • Death benefits for survivors
  • Vocational rehabilitation including training for a different position if necessary
  • Lump-sum payment for permanent disability cases

The injury does not have to occur only during the course of a typical work day. Benefit eligibility happens even if it is during a work-sponsored event like a holiday party or on a business trip. An injured employee is ineligible for benefits, however, if the worker commits a crime, is under the influence of drugs or alcohol or if the injury is self-inflicted.

 

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