Saving Costs, or Endangering Workers?
When the economy takes a downturn, there will always be those who attempt to profit from the misfortunes of others. Lately, an influx of federal stimulus money in New York has done nothing but encourage these types of people to try and get a piece of the pie.
The federal stimulus' focus on construction and other projects has led to the increased creation of fly-by-night construction companies who look to profit by exploiting hard-working people who need work. New York law requires that employers provide workers' compensation insurance for their employees and to comply with workplace safety regulations. However, many employers are falling short of their legal obligations. Because of this workers are getting hurt and are left without many options when facing medical bills and lost wages after injuries. Some of these companies have even begun to offer settlements to workers in exchange for the worker agreeing to not pursue legal action or contact an attorney. Injured workers should NEVER accept a settlement without contacting an attorney first. The employers offer these settlements to prevent workers from being compensated the full amount they are owed.
While we at the White Plains offices of Markhoff & Mittman understand that all workers may not be able to identify companies that cut corners on safety and lack workers' compensation insurance, we want all workers to be aware of their legal rights. In a later post we will quick a overview of New York's workers' compensation laws.