Section 29 and its affects on compensibility
If you are hurt at work or hurt on the job in New York, it is important to conult a New York Workers Compensation Attorney. Many times, injured workers go directly to a personal injury attorney when in fact they should consult a New York Workers Compensation lawyer. Attorneys that do not concentrate their practice in New York Workers Compensation may not be aware that an accident may have actually more than one case attached to it. Depending on where you reside you should consult either a QUEENS WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY, a BROOKLYN WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY NEW YORK WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY, BRONX WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY, STATEN ISLAND WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY if you are HURT AT WORK in NYC, or a LONG ISLAND WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY. Other than the personal injury case, there also may be medical malpractice cases as well as wage theft cases amongst many others. What concerns us most since we specialize in this area is that in settling a personal inquiry case a New York workers comp lawyer can let you know if a compensation case may also exist. Not recognizing and paying attention to the workers compensation cases may open the personal injury attorney up to professional liability and malpractice claims due to the claimant potentially losing some or all of his or her rights.
With reference to workers compensation, liability and malpractice issue most readily appears when the personal injury attorney is ready to settle the case pursuant to section 29 of the ny workers compensation law. If you are a claimant ready to settle your personal injury claim please contact the Harris Ugalde & Rzonca, LLP to make sure you are not giving up any rights.
Section 29 of the workers compensation presents a scenario that our clients generally face and presents a daunting task to work through on many cases. The client could be led to think that there is only one case, either the personal injury case or the workers compensation case. If the client is told that there are two cases, they often are not told that the two cases are intertwined. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Attorneys are cautioned to make sure they explain to their clients that the personal injury and workers compensation systems complement each other in many ways but the reasoning behind both schemes seems to be to pay the claimant for damage suffered to make him or her whole but not to overpay, therefore no double recoveries or unjust enrichment.
To this end there are three main considerations for the attorney with regard to settlements of personal injury claims with regard to workers compensation cases. When the third party case settles, the workers compensation carrier can obtain the recovery of part of the money’s obtained in the third party to reimburse it for at least part of what they paid in the form of lost wage payments and the payment of medical benefits. The reasoning behind this scheme is that the workers compensation carrier should be reimbursed at least some of what the plaintiffs is recovering in his or her personal injury suit to make sure the plaintiff again is paid to be made whole while again not being unjustly enriched.
The second main way the third party affects the workers compensation case is that when the third party settles, with the exception of motor vehicle accidents which have a separate scheme to be dealt with in a later article, the workers compensation carrier also receives a holiday for any further payments of medical benefits or weekly cash payments until the carrier takes full credit for the net value of the settlement. For instance, if a case settles for $200,000, and the client realizes $100,000 after attorneys’ fees and other costs (such as filing fees, and other disbursements for medical and expert testimony fees) the carrier has a holiday, that is, it does not have to pay for weekly cash benefits or for medical bills until $100,000 has accumulated from the weekly benefits and medical paid. Basically, a person getting $400 per week from workers compensation would not get that money until the credit to the carrier for $100,000 has run out.
Another concern for the personal Injury attorney is the need to obtain consent from the claimant’s workers compensation carrier. Oftentimes, a personal injury attorney may not even know that a claimant has a workers compensation case, nor a potential case. Such an attorney may proceed with settling the case, and not account for the workers compensation component.
Caution is suggested to such attorneys to make sure that the claimant is not on compensation because the claimant may not entitled to further benefits and they may stop, if the third party does not consent to the settlement. Again, depending on your residence, please consult a QUEENS WORKERS COMPENSATION LAWYER, a BROOKLYN WORKERS COMPENSATION LAWYER, NEW YORK WORKERS COMPENSATION LAWYER, BRONX WORKERS COMPENSATION LAWYER, STATEN ISLAND WORKERS COMPENSATION LAWYER or LONG ISLAND WORKERS COMPENSATION LAWYER.
The reason behind the consent requirement probably flows again from the need that a person should not receive a double recovery. The insurance carrier as noted above obtains payment for workers compensation and benefits paid from the proceeds of the third party settlement. Inevitably, the third party settlement should provide a reimbursement to the carrier for at least part of what it paid out. If the workers compensation carrier is not made part of the settlement negotiations, there is a strong danger that the workers compensation carrier will not obtain its lien and will therefore the claimant will have been unjustly enriched.
In sum, caution on the part of the personal injury attorney before settling the personal injury case should be taken.
If you are a claimant on ny workers compensation and have questions about the impact of settling the third party case has on your case, please call the Harris Ugalde & Rzonca, LLP. Many of our peers consider our firm the Best Workers Compensation Attorney. We would be more than happy to address any concerns and answer questions as to the interplay of workers compensation and personal injury cases. For those clients who find it hard to communicate in English, we have a RUSSIAN SPEAKING WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY, a POLISH SPEAKING WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY, a SPANISH SPEAKING WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY, LASTIMADO EN EL TRABAJO LESIONADO EN EL TRABAJO, a CHINESE SPEAKING WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY and a BENGALI SPEAKING WORKERS COMPENSATION ATTORNEY on staff