New York City’s legendary skyline continues its march toward the clouds. Many new towering buildings are either planned or under construction in Manhattan. These New York construction projects are worth watching, because they will likely set the bar for the future of the industry. Read more
New York State Workers Compensation Benefits
Workers compensation plays a vital role in protecting both workers and contracting companies from the dangers of the job. The construction industry is one of the most dangerous jobs a person can undertake, with many thousands of accidents every year. However safe you work on a job site, you can’t avoid the occasional accident. Workers comp is designed to mitigate losses while allowing workers the time they need to heal and get back on their feet. Here is a look at what is included in New York State workers compensation benefits.
Every state has its own laws, rules and regulations regarding workers comp. In New York State, workers comp benefits are divided among several categories. These include:
- Monetary benefits
- Supplemental awards
- Medical care
- Social Security
- Death benefits
A week following an accident resulting in disability, a worker is eligible for cash awards. The amount of money a claimant is allowed to collect is based on their average weekly earnings over the past year. A specific mathematical formula is used to determine this award. For those able to return to work but with limited earning capability, partial benefits may be received to make up the difference.
These awards are available to those claimants who are affected by increasing costs of treatment and living. There are two categories of supplemental awards: Those who were injured or disabled permanently before 1979, and widows whose spouse died as the result of an accident before 1979. A form (SC-4) is used to apply for these benefits.
The most important part of workers comp, medical care covers the treatment, rehabilitation, doctor’s visits and any other medical costs incurred as a result of an accident resulting in severe injury, disability or death (costs prior to the decedent’s passing, in the latter case). Everything from medication to diagnostic tests to doctor’s office visits to rehabilitation and surgery can be covered in this area.
Social Security Benefits
Not strictly part of the workers compensation insurance, Social Security is nevertheless a vital part of recovery for those who are long-term or permanently disabled from an accident at work. If your injury will keep you out of action for at least a year, you may be eligible for Social Security benefits. Contact the SSA for more information about this.
Those who lose a spouse due to a workplace injury are entitled to death benefits under New York State law. These benefits are paid out weekly and are equal to two-thirds of the average hourly wage made by the worker before he or she passed away. It is tied to the limits of Cash Awards (above), and can be awarded to the spouse, children, grandchildren, grandparents, siblings, parents or other closest relative.
New York’s Labor Law 240 — also called the Scaffold Law — has created a lot of difficulty for many contractors across the state. The law holds property owners and contractors responsible for damages that arise from accidents related to high altitude. This responsibility even extends to situations where workers have blatantly ignored safety rules on job sites.
As a result of claims based on this law, insurance rates have skyrocketed and created serious expense for construction firms. This has made it more important than ever to strictly enforce safety guidelines on the job site.
An injury on the job can be a frightening event. As contractors we understand that even the slightest of injuries can spiral out of control quickly if it does not receive the proper medical attention. Still, plenty of workers never make it to the doctor. They continue working through that injury. Fear of medical expenses and recovery time are two major detractor to contractor health (and it shouldn’t be). If you get injured on the job you should not have to worry about the cost of your medical bills assuming you or your employer has a workers compensation policy. Here’s what you need to know about NYS workers compensation.
How NYS Workers Compensation Can Help You Get Through an Injury
Who Needs It?
Workers compensation is one of the most popular policies for contractors in New York State. Most of that has to do with the fact that workers comp is required by law from the Eastern most point of Long Island all the way to Buffalo. So, wherever you are in New York, your employer needs to carry some kind of workers compensation policy. If you are self-employed (and employ others) you will also need to acquire that policy. But, that’s enough about who needs NYS workers compensation insurance. The bigger question is what can it do for you?
What Can it Do for You?
NYS workers compensation is designed to protect you from the following situations: injuries, loss of limb, repetitive motion injuries, injuries inflicted at work, medical treatment, rehabilitation and even death. Typically, not being able to go to work would put you and your family in an extremely stressful situation financially. Workers comp should help alleviate some of that stress. It will cover up to two-thirds of your salary until you are able to return to work and will cover any additional medical expenses that you may encounter.
Coming from Buffalo, you kind of get an understanding that snow is more than just the pretty stuff that falls around Christmas. Sure, there’s an elegance to it but you also have to respect its’ potentially destructive nature. Enough of it can cause major power outages and make roads downright dangerous, increasing the chances of potentially serious auto accidents. It is in these situations that every profession (no matter big or small) relies on snow removal contractors (and we need as many as possible in NY). Listed below is your three step guide to getting your snow removal contractor license in NY because the Empire State needs you.
Your Guide to Getting Your Snow Removal Contractor License in NY
1. Get Experience
Unlike some licenses, a degree is not required to get your snow removal contractor license in NY. Experience and skill will be favored more heavily than any degree you acquire (although a business degree may help you avoid potential pitfalls down the road). Typically, you will be required to have 1 to 3 years of experience operating snow removal vehicles before you can apply for your license and become an independent snow removal contractor. Through experience you will also get a better overview of the process, customer expectations and what skills you may need before you can open your own business.
2. Create Your Business Plan
After you have locked up your 1 to 3 years of experience you should start formulating your formal business plan. This should detail what equipment you may need, your goals and potential revenue. You should also consider what you will do for business during those months where snow does not fall.
3. Get Insured, Funded and Licensed
Your final step to obtaining your snow removal contractor license in NY may be your most complicated one. Insurance, funding and licensing will all require quite a bit of research and money. Before you open your business you will have to have enough capital to cover overhead costs (such as equipment), a viable business plan that will help a bank approve you for a business loan and enough money left over to carry insurance (especially workers comp and general liability).
Hopefully our three step guide will help you get on the fast track to obtaining your snow removal contractor license in NY. If you have any further questions about the process, or about your insurance needs, please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-649-9094. We look forward to hearing from you!