Staten Island Worker Compensation for Catastrophic Injuries Lawyers

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Staten Island Workers' Compensation Lawyer for Catastrophic Injuries

If you have suffered a severe work injury and your injury meets the criteria for a “catastrophic” designation under New York State workers’ compensation laws, you are entitled to various benefits, including medical coverage, vocational rehabilitation, and indefinite Total Disability Benefits until you can return to work. However, if your injury does not meet the specific requirements for being catastrophic, your income replacement benefits will be limited to 400 weeks. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that your injury is determined to be catastrophic according to the regulations of the New York State workers’ compensation system.

Under Section 15(3)(v) of the New York Workers’ Compensation Law, catastrophic injuries in workers’ compensation claims are defined as follows:

Severe paralysis of the arm, leg, or trunk due to spinal cord injuries.

Amputation of an arm, hand, foot, or leg resulting in the effective loss of use of the affected limb.

Severe brain or closed-head injuries causing significant sensory or motor disturbances, communication impairments, complex cerebral function disturbances, consciousness disruptions, or severe episodic neurological disorders.

Second- or third-degree burns covering at least 25% of the body as a whole.


Third-degree burns affecting 5% or more of the face or hands.

Total or industrial blindness.

Additionally, if an injury prevents you from performing your previous work or any substantial employment available in the national economy for which you are otherwise qualified, it may also be considered catastrophic.

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Staten Island Worker Compensation Practice Areas

Establishing the Catastrophic Nature of Your Injury

Determining whether an injury qualifies as catastrophic can be somewhat flexible, considering the severity and type of symptoms. If you or your loved one has suffered a severe work-related injury, it is advisable to have a workers’ compensation lawyer in Staten Island review your case to determine if pursuing catastrophic workers’ compensation benefits is appropriate. In New York State, workers’ compensation operates under a no-fault system, which means that fault does not need to be established for an injured worker to seek benefits. While you cannot sue your employer for work-related injuries, you may have the option to sue third parties responsible for the incident.


When evaluating your damages, your personal injury attorney will consider the following factors to determine a fair settlement:


Financial Losses

This includes medical bills, property damage, and lost wages. Your attorney will gather evidence such as receipts, bills, repair estimates, and expert testimonies to assess your current and future expenses resulting from the accident.


Personal Losses

These encompass physical pain, emotional suffering, and mental distress. While it is challenging to assign a precise monetary value to personal losses (also known as non-economic damages), they are just as significant as financial losses.


Punitive Damages

It’s important to note that punitive damages can only be ordered by the court and are relatively rare. Your attorney will inform you if your case may qualify for punitive damages.

Our ultimate goal is to secure a settlement or verdict that enhances your quality of life and provides for future treatment. Therefore, we will diligently pursue the maximum appropriate compensation through negotiations or trial.


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Categorizing Workplace Injuries

Workers’ compensation claims in Staten Island distinguish between catastrophic and non-catastrophic cases, affecting the benefits available. Typically, the treating physician assesses whether an injury is catastrophic or non-catastrophic, but agreement between the parties or a designation from the New York State Board of Workers’ Compensation is also possible. It is important to note that injury designations can change over time. For example, if the treating physician approves your return to work, your classification may shift from catastrophic to non-catastrophic.

Catastrophic Workers' Compensation Cases

Catastrophic cases involve severe workplace accidents that result in injuries severely limiting the worker’s ability to return to their previous job or perform similar work. Examples of catastrophic injuries include amputations, severe paralysis, spinal cord injuries, serious head injuries, severe burns, blindness, and other injuries that prevent the performance of previous job tasks or a range of other jobs.


Workers who suffer catastrophic injuries are eligible for two-thirds of their regular weekly salary under workers’ compensation, with a cap at $550 per week. They can also receive medical, vocational, and rehabilitation benefits throughout their recovery period, and their workers’ compensation benefits are available for life.

Non-Catastrophic Workers’ Compensation Cases

Non-catastrophic injuries are those that do not meet the specific criteria for catastrophic designation but still require medical treatment and time off work. Workers with non-catastrophic injuries can receive workers’ compensation benefits for a maximum of 400 weeks.

Frequently Asked Questions

Consult a Staten Island Workers' Compensation Lawyer for Catastrophic Injuries

Navigating the complex process of workers’ compensation, especially in catastrophic injury cases, requires the expertise of a qualified attorney. At Gabriel Legal Injury Lawyers, we are dedicated to assisting injured workers in Staten Island with their workers’ compensation claims, ensuring they receive the proper benefits and protecting their rights. 


Contact us today to discuss your case and explore your legal options.


Blindness – Whether it’s total blindness or industrial blindness, causing the inability to perform job duties.

Other severe injuries that prevent workers from performing their previous job tasks or a range of jobs in the economy.


Victims of catastrophic workplace accidents are entitled to receive two-thirds of their regular weekly salary through workers’ compensation, with a cap at $550 per week. Additionally, they can access medical, vocational, and rehabilitation benefits throughout their recovery. These benefits are available for life.


During the period when a worker is unable to work, they can receive Temporary Total Disability benefits. However, if they can only return to a lower-paying and less-skilled position due to their catastrophic injuries, they may be eligible for Temporary Partial Disability benefits. In some cases, Permanent Partial Disability benefits may be applicable after the Temporary Partial Disability benefits have been paid.


Employers are responsible for appointing a rehabilitation supplier experienced in handling catastrophic workers’ compensation cases, who will ensure that the injured worker receives appropriate care.

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Determining Liability in an Staten Island Personal Injury Claim

Identifying all potential defendants who may be liable for a personal injury requires a thorough investigation. If someone else failed to exercise due care, they can be held responsible for the resulting injuries.

It’s essential to recognize that the person directly responsible for the accident may not be the sole party held liable. For instance, in a drunk driving auto accident, not only the intoxicated driver but also the individual who served alcohol to the visibly intoxicated person could be held responsible.

By carefully assessing the circumstances, an experienced personal injury attorney can determine the parties who may be held accountable in your specific case.

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The sooner you contact a personal injury attorney in Staten Island after an accident, the easier it will be to collect evidence.Having a clear understanding of the negligence laws in your state is crucial when pursuing a personal injury claim. Your attorney will play a crucial role in proving fault in your case. While some states follow “no-fault” laws, it’s important to note that New York does not fall into this category.

It’s important to understand that even if you bear some responsibility for the accident, you may still be eligible for compensation. It’s important to note that New York follows a pure comparative negligence rule, which means that even if a plaintiff is deemed to be more than 50% at fault, they can still recover damages. The amount of compensation they receive will be reduced by their assigned percentage of fault.

Overview of the Personal Injury Lawsuit Process

It’s natural to have concerns about what to expect during the claims process, but rest assured, our experienced lawyers are here to guide you. Here is an outline of the stages you can anticipate:


Initial Consultation

This is an opportunity for you to share your account of the incident and ask questions about the case. The attorney will evaluate the viability of your case and provide appropriate advice before entering a fee agreement.


Case Investigation

Your attorney will conduct a comprehensive investigation, including interviews with you and witnesses, review of your background and medical records, to gather necessary information and determine the best course of action for your case.


Filing Court Documents

Your lawyer will file a personal injury complaint, which serves as the initial document of the case. The complaint outlines the nature of the incident and the injuries sustained, and must be properly served to the defendant along with related documents.


The Discovery Process

This involves the exchange of evidence between the involved parties. Interrogations, document requests, sworn statements, and depositions may be part of the process. Your attorney may also co


Pre-Trial Litigation and Motions

After reaching maximum medical improvement (MMI), your lawyer will demand compensation based on the full extent of your damages. Negotiations with the at-fault party’s insurers will take place to seek a fair settlement.



If an out-of-court agreement cannot be reached, the case will proceed to trial. The jury will determine the defendant’s liability, and if the verdict favors the plaintiff, the defendant will be obligated to compensate for the identified damages.

Arrange Your Free Consultation in Staten Island

Gabriel Legal Injury Lawyers specializes in personal injury cases, handling even the most complex matters. Our legal team is well-versed in the laws and knows how to pursue the compensation you deserve.

Let’s talk

Contact us today for a free consultation and let us assist you in moving forward after this challenging time.

Staten Island Worker Compensation for Catastrophic Injuries Lawyers

4.8 Stars


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