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Michael Lawrence Varon, PLLC Michael Lawrence Varon, PLLC
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White Plains Contractor & Subcontractor Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Law Office of Michael Lawrence Varon, PLLC EmployeeConstruction work is extremely dangerous, and workers at these job sites can suffer serious and fatal injuries, even when proper precautions are taken. Indeed, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) workplace injuries are a serious problem that routinely impact construction workers. Construction sites are known for dangers characterized as the “fatal four,” which includes falls, being struck by an object, electrocutions, and getting caught-in or between equipment or objects.

When a job requires the use of contractors and subcontractors, it can be difficult to understand how workers’ compensation policies apply. Yet it is extremely important for contractors and subcontractors in New York to know what type of compensation they can be eligible to receive if they get hurt on the job. Generally speaking, contractors and subcontractors are likely to be covered by the general contractor’s workers’ compensation policy. If you have questions, you should speak with a White Plains workers’ compensation lawyer experienced with contractor and bubcontractor injuries, as soon as possible.

Understanding the Difference Between Employees and Independent Contractors

The New York State Workers’ Compensation Board emphasizes that there is a distinction between employees and independent contractors when it comes to workers’ compensation benefits.

Determining whether a worker should be classified as an employee or as an independent contractor can be complicated. Generally speaking, if a worker can be classified as an independent contractor instead of an employee, the independent contractor may need to provide his or her own insurance. However, this works slightly differently when it comes to construction jobs and workers’ compensation.

Are Contractors and Subcontractors Eligible for Workers’ Compensation Benefits in New York?

In most cases involving construction work, contractors and subcontractors will be covered by a general contractor’s workers’ compensation policy. As the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board clarifies, “individuals alleged to be subcontractors have been determined . . . to be employees when such individuals have been injured and have filed claims against the general contractor.” As such, “insurance carriers often assess general contractors premiums for all ‘subcontractors’ on the job site, unless the subcontractors furnish proof that they have their own workers’ compensation insurance policy.”

To be clear, simply identifying a worker as an independent contractor—a contractor or a subcontractor—does not mean that the worker necessarily would be classified this was by the Workers’ Compensation Board. As such, in construction work, contractors and subcontractors either will be covered by the general contractor’s workers’ compensation policy or will be required to purchase their own policy before work begins.

For large construction projects, the Workers’ Compensation Board explains that “it is standard practice . . . for the main general contractor to take out a workers’ compensation policy to cover all workers on a specific construction job site.” This type of policy is described as a “wrap-up policy,” and it typically comes with an expiration date that is the date of the expected completion of the construction work. Contractors and subcontractors typically are covered for workers’ compensation benefits under any wrap-up policy.

Contact an Experienced White Plains Contractor & Subcontractor Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Do you need assistance with your workers’ compensation claim? An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in New York can speak with you today. Contact the Law Office of Michael Lawrence Varon to learn more about how we serve injured workers in New York.

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