First, allow me to introduce myself. I’m Eric Johnson and I work with Jack Schamel in the Workers’ Compensation and Social Security Disability group here at the Ziff Law Firm. I am currently licensed as an attorney in North Carolina. Jim Reed has done some really terrific posts on New York Workers’ Comp and I hope to follow suit with this post on time limits.

You have 30 days after your work related injury to give your employer either oral or written notice of your injury. Written notice is preferable and the employer’s accident report will suffice. Please keep a copy of the report.

You have 2 years after your injury to file a claim with the Workers’ Comp Board. We frequently have clients who are receiving wage and medical benefits from the insurance company; however, the client has not filed a claim. Any benefits you receive prior to filing a case are being provided voluntarily and are subject to change by the insurance company. Very few employers will actually file a Workers’ Comp claim for you. It is very important that your claim be filed to protect your benefits.

FINALLY some good news in the form of a time limit that applies to the insurance company. The insurance company has 30 days from the time your doctor requests authorization for a test or procedure in which to authorize that test or procedure. If the insurance company doesn’t respond to the doctor’s request for authorization, the doctor’s office will frequently resubmit requests for authorization, which is unlikely to speed things up.

Insurance companies don’t make money by writing checks. Insurance companies make money by delaying or denying care. Because doctors’ offices routinely resubmit requests for authorization, needed care is often needlessly delayed. We advise our clients to ask their doctors to submit a request for authorization only one time. If the requested test or procedure isn’t authorized in 30 days, we will request a hearing and ask the Judge to authorize it.

Don’t go it alone. Please come back for my next post in which I dispel the myth that you can’t receive Workers’ Comp and unemployment benefits at the same time.

Thanks for reading,

Eric L. Johnson
Ziff, Weiermiller, Hayden & Mustico, LLP
303 William St., Elmira, NY 14902
Tel: (607) 733-8866
Fax: (607) 732-6062
Toll free: 1-800-943-3529