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What is a schedule loss of use benefit?

For many New Yorkers, going to work is just part of their daily routine. Yet, when an unexpected workplace accident leaves them injured, their routine may be thrown out the window. These injured workers may find themselves unable to work and in need of extensive medical care if they hope to recover from their harm and get back to work. However, oftentimes workers who suffer an on-the-job injury are unable to fully recover.

Those individuals whose body fails to recover to its full, pre-accident ability may be able to obtain additional benefits from the workers' compensation system. This benefit, known as a schedule loss of use, can apply to many body parts, including eyes, ears, legs, hands, toes and fingers, shoulder, ankles and knees. In order to recover this benefit though, an individual has to show that the injury, such as vision or hearing loss, is permanent.

Once that is achieved, the workers' compensation board will consider the severity of the injury and the body part injured to determine how much the injured worker should be paid. However, the amount can be quite significant, especially since this award is independent of whether an individual missed any work on account of the injury.

Although this award can prove quite beneficial for injured workers, it, like other workers' compensation benefits, is subject to denial. Therefore, claimants need to be prepared to put forth compelling medical evidence showing how their case conforms to the law. This isn't always easy, but a skilled legal advocate may be able to provide assistance in reaching a favorable outcome.

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