Jonathan H. Poznansky, Attorney at Law

When am I eligible for workers' compensation schedule awards?

When New York workers are injured on the job, the injury itself is a key part of getting workers' compensation benefits. However, there are other aspects to the claim that must be understood in the context of how it is assessed by the Workers' Compensation Board and the amount the person will get is determined. There is a difference between schedule awards and non-schedule awards. After an injury, it is important to know the details of this requirement as it will be essential when the payments are sought and approved.

With a schedule award, the benefits will not be provided based on the injury itself, but on what permanent impairments the worker suffers from in the aftermath. There are compliance requirements when there is a final adjustment of a claim based on it being a schedule award. They include: the person suffering from a permanent impairment to an extremity, losing vision or hearing permanently or having a permanent facial disfigurement.

There must be functional loss or anatomical loss with, for example, damage to nerves, tissues, blood vessels and more. The person must not have achieved maximum medical improvement. And there cannot be a residual impairment to the systemic area such as the back, head or neck prior to the claim as this will not be suitable for this evaluation.

For New York workers who are injured on the job and are suffering from the above problems after the fact, it is a critical part of getting the maximum in workers' compensation benefits based on it falling into the category of being a schedule award. When seeking these benefits, having legal help can be important. As soon as the injury has happened, it is wise to call a law firm experienced in workers' compensation for advice and guidance.

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