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New York City and Long Island Workers' Compensation Blog

How does the Workers' Compensation Board hearing process work?

After an employee files a workers' compensation insurance claim, the insurance carrier decides if they are accepting or contesting the claim. In cases where a claim is contested, it proceeds through the New York Workers' Compensation Board.

The Workers' Compensation Board is an administrative court that oversees cases. How does the hearing process work if a claim goes before them?

Sanitation is the fourth most dangerous job

When people think of dangerous jobs, they think of firefighters, construction crews working on high rises and other occupations that are associated with a physically intimidating setting. Few think of sanitation, but it’s the fourth most deadly occupation in the country, after fishing, logging and aircraft.

Some of the leading causes of workplace fatalities in New York are falls, contact with objects and equipment, transportation incidents, and workplace violence. Sanitation is a physical job, with heavy machinery that travels city streets. Sanitation workers are exposed to all of these threats.

Follow prescribed treatment to receive SSD benefits

One of the documents required to prove a disability to apply for social security disability benefits is verification from a medical professional. However, many may believe that just because the doctor has treated them once, it is enough evidence-this is not the case. One of common reasons SSD benefits are denied is because the individual failed to follow the doctor's the prescribed treatment plan, when that person had the ability to do so.

As per SS 82-59, a failure to follow prescribed treatment can be one of the reasons SSD benefits are denied. Someone with a disabling condition that could be treated with prescribed treatment must follow that treatment to be considered disabled, unless they can show a justifiable reason they have not followed it.


Applying for Social Security Disability benefits can be overwhelming. Understanding the ever-changing laws, getting the requisite paperwork together and then finally competing the application and submitting it seems like a huge relief for New York claimants. Unfortunately, many first-time applications are denied and this can be devastating for applicants. Rather than admit defeat, it is important to understand why the claim has been denied and how to move forward from there.


As a previous post discussed, there are government programs like disability that could benefit those that are suffering from serious and terminal illnesses. The Social Security Administration (SSA) devised the Compassionate Allowance program so those diagnosed with a severe or terminal illness could quickly get the benefits he or she needs. But in order to enjoy the benefits of the program, applicants in New York and elsewhere should understand the process and what qualifies them for this program.

Issues with the SSA's Compassionate Allowance program

Being diagnosed with a serious illness is shocking, emotional and life altering. No one expects such a diagnosis, whether they are young or old, and many questions arise when such a diagnosis is made. Can they beat the odds and survive it? What treatments are involved? How will treatments impact my health and ability to enjoy life? Can I afford these treatments? How will this disease impact my loved ones and ability to support them and myself? The answer to some of these questions may be to seek out assistance from the Social Security Administration.

This government agency developed the Compassionate Allowance program, which was designed to get benefits quickly to those diagnosed with severe and terminal illnesses. If an individual has been diagnosed with one of the 200 diseases listed on the SSA list, he or she could take advantage of this program.

What information is necessary in a SSD application?

When individuals in New York are suffering from a disability, they will seek to understand their options in the matter. Whether they were born with a disability or acquired one later in life due to an injury or illness, it is possible to utilize federal programs designed to help those living with disabilities. Nonetheless, many applicants are apprehensive about the process, hearing that it is lengthy, complex and likely to result in a denial. While many initial applicants are denied, this should not deter an applicant from sending in an application. By understanding what documents and information are required, and applicant could be better prepared to file a successful application or appeal.

What information is necessary in a SSD application? First, applicants should be prepared to answer questions regarding his or her personal information. This includes date of birth, place of birth and Social Security number. Additionally, if an applicant is married or has past spouses, he or she will need to include the name, Social Security number and date of birth of current and former spouses. An applicant should also include dates and places of marriage and dates of divorce or death if applicable. Other needed personal information include the names and date of birth of any minor children and banking numbers of any financial accounts.

Disability and qualifying for earned income tax credits

When individuals in New York and elsewhere are living with a disability due to an injury, illness or mental condition, it can be difficult. A disability could make it challenging to obtain and maintain gainful employment; thus, causing financial problems. In addition to applying for SSD benefits through the Social Security Administration, it is important that applicants consider other benefits and claims they might have for living with a debilitating injury, illness or condition.

When it comes to filing for taxes, those receiving disability benefits should note that they could qualify for earned income tax credits. The IRS considers those currently receiving SSD benefits to qualify as earned income until the recipient reached the minimum retirement age. This is the earliest age a person could receive his or her pension. Once an individual reaches that age, the IRS no longer considers the payments to be your pension and not earned income.

Helping you apply for SSD benefits for a mental condition

Whether it is early in life or during adulthood, receiving a diagnosis of a mental disorder is never easy for the individual and their loved ones. In some cases, such a diagnosis represents a better understanding of a person's limitations and struggles to live a normal life. For some residents in New York and other states, a mental condition means a disabling condition that makes it difficult to work or even perform basic life functions.

Mental disorders are sometimes stigmatized and are often misunderstood. This can sometimes make it difficult for outsiders to understand all the pain and suffering a person is going through because of a mental condition.

What is considered substantial gainful activity?

Living with a disability can be very challenging and overwhelming for individuals in New York and elsewhere. Whether you were born with a disability or acquired one later in life due to an injury or illness, there are options available for those living with disabilities that are unable to work. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has established programs that are designed for those living with disabilities, with the goal being to assist those with limited income and resources.

When it comes to receiving Social Security Disability through SSDI or SSI, applicants must not only prove that they qualify for these benefits because they meet the definition of disabled, but they also must prove that they cannot meet their basic living needs because of their disability. For those unable to work or only able to work limited hours, an applicant must prove that they are unable to engage in substantial gainful activity.


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