Coronavirus Workers Compensation Benefits Lawyers Brooklyn, NY
The United States and the rest of the world have spent the past several months struggling to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. In New York alone, there have been more than 350,000 people who have tested positive for the virus, as of this writing. The pandemic has caused businesses and schools across the country to shut down while most states have been put under stay at home orders. While everyone is at risk of contracting the potentially fatal virus, workers who are deemed front line workers and essential employees have continued to show up for jobs every day, essentially putting their health at risk. As states begin to open up again, many other employees will also be at risk of catching the virus. The Brooklyn, NY coronavirus workers compensation benefits lawyers at
Pandemics and Epidemics
While workers’ compensation benefits typically cover job-related injuries or occupational diseases, most states have laws that exclude what is referred to as “ordinary diseases” from the list of conditions that can be classified as occupational Over the past few decades, we have seen several pandemics, including SARS, H1N1, Ebola, and Zika. However, because of the low rate of infection in the US of these viruses, their effect on workers’ compensation benefits was not addressed.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits for COVID-19
Brooklyn, NY coronavirus workers compensation benefits lawyers know that it will be up to each state to determine whether or not workers who develop COVID-19 will be able to file workers’ compensation claims against their employers. Some jobs, such as health care workers and first responders, are more at high risk of catching the virus because of their consistent exposure to people who are infected.
There are also many other industries that are considered essential workers that have had a high rate of infection, including grocery workers, transportation workers, meat-packing plant workers, and more. The risk to workers in other industries will likely increase as New York businesses begin to open up.
The Brooklyn, NY coronavirus workers compensation benefits lawyers from our firm have been closely monitoring what steps New York lawmakers are taking to address COVID-19 and workers’ compensation benefits, including one proposed amendment that would classify COVID-19 as an occupational disease.
As New York begins to open back up and more people do return to the workplace, it is the responsibility of employers to develop and implement guidelines in order to protect all workers. Every employer not only needs to determine if the virus is actually a workplace hazard. For most industries, this answer will be yes, given how contagious the virus is.
Coronavirus workers compensation benefits lawyers in Brooklyn, NY also know that companies are required to put in place mandatory measures in order to minimize employees’ exposure to the virus. If employees get sick with COVID-19 because the company fails to put these measures, the potential is there for employer liability and workers’ compensation benefits for the sick employee.
To learn more, contact Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C. to speak with one of our coronavirus workers compensation benefits lawyers Brooklyn, NY clients recommend to find out what type of legal options may be available if you or a loved one has been exposed to COVID-19 at work.