By DIANE S. WILLIAMS
DC 37 members who believe they have contracted coronavirus in the line of duty can apply for New York State Workers’ Compensation. A member has 30 days to file a Workers’ Comp claim for coronavirus and must submit medical documentation for their illness or injury.
DC 37 members, especially those classified as essential workers, frontline workers, and healthcare workers, diagnosed with novel coronavirus — COVID-19 — must notify their agency. If a member tests positive for COVID-19, their employer may ask for medical documentation.
Your agency/ employer may cover an absence due to a medical diagnosis of COVID-19. Please check with your agency/employer for Time and Leave policy and guidance.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board has extended the window to file a claim by an additional 30 days from the date of your injury or illness. The Workers’ Compensation Board has not changed its rules or application process.
DC 37 does not provide legal representation in Workers’ Comp claims. Members can contact the DC 37 Safety and Health Department at 212-815-1685 for a referral list of attorneys who specialize in Workers’ Compensation. The member can choose legal representation that they believe will provide them with the best advice and guidance.
Following these steps can ensure that a member’s claim is properly filed and that they have an attorney who can follow-up with the WCB regarding their claim. The Workers’ Compensation Board will ultimately determine eligibility.
Additionally, DC 37 Health & Security short-term disability benefits may be available for members who have filed Workers’ Compensation claims. To determine eligibility, see the DC 37 website.