As in all injury cases we handle, your initial consultation with our office on comp cases is free. Accordingly, you have nothing to lose to become informed of your rights and the process. Learning about the comp system is very important because even though the system is supposedly set up to protect the injured worker, their are many pitfalls and quirks in the system that you need to know about to adequately protect your interests.
If you decide that you want representation in your New York Workers’ Compensation claim, you will never pay your attorney directly. In fact, under NY law, it’s illegal for a lawyer to accept fees directly from a client in a Workers’ Compensation case. Only the Workers Comp Judge can award an attorney’s fee.
If we represent you at a simple hearing, our fee is generally $100 to $200 depending on how much work we do and we can only be paid if you’re getting paid. In other words, if no money is being awarded to you, the Judge cannot and will not award an attorney’s fee to us. If the Judge awards an attorneys fee, our fee is usually deducted from your award check at a rate of $5 or $10 a week and after 20 weeks we get a check.
Additionally, there are a number of circumstances under which you may be eligible to receive a lump sum compensation payment (more on that later). If we represent you under those circumstances, our fee is generally around 10% of the lump sum amount awarded to you.
Whether it is with our firm or another firm, the important thing is that you meet with someone experienced with workers comp cases and let them explain the workings of the Workers’ Compensation system. Then you can make a decision if you want to be represented.
Please come back for my next installment on Workers’ Compensation in which I discuss “consequential injuries” and what that means in workers comp.
Thanks for reading,
NY Injury and Accident Attorney