Understanding the Section 32 Lump Sum
When you have questions for workers comp lawyers New York residents turn to Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C. for answers. If you’re familiar with Section 32 as it pertains to workers compensation claims, you may be wondering about your options.
Experienced workers comp lawyers in New York, such as the attorneys of Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C., will stress the importance of understanding Section 32. For employees who sustained a serious injury while on the job, we are pleased to offer a free consultation. Call our office today to make an appointment with a team of New York workers comp lawyers. An attorney from our firm may provide you with more details in addition to the information below.
What Is a Section 32 Lump Sum?
As workers comp lawyers New York provides might explain, a Section 32 agreement is a waiver agreement between a workers compensation insurance company and an injured worker. A Section 32 lump sum is a settlement amount that is agreed to between the workers comp insurance company and the worker.
The agreement is one that is usually reached in negotiations. The injured worker may hire workers comp lawyers New York victims rely on to negotiate with the insurance company on their behalf. Instead of receiving ongoing weekly payments, the injured worker receives one lump sum from the insurance company in a Section 32 lump sum. This is instead of, rather than in addition to, ongoing weekly payments.
Any New York workers comp lawyers you hire should explain what this entails for your unique situation. The following are general points to keep in mind:
- A Section 32 agreement is optional for both parties.
- The worker must have been injured while on the job.
- The worker must be eligible for workers compensation benefits.
- The agreement must be approved by the New York State Workers Compensation Board.
- The lump sum includes past, present, and future costs related to the injury that the worker suffered while on the job.
Comparing a Lump Sum Payment to Weekly Benefits
Before deciding if a Section 32 lump sum agreement is best for you, it is important to weigh the advantages and disadvantages. Typically, when clients are considering a Section 32 lump sum, their workers comp lawyers New York can provide will do a thorough analysis of the client’s medical benefits and their future lost wages.
Your alternative is to choose weekly benefits, which is the more common of the two. Workers comp lawyers New York residents trust can explain more, but here are the main differences between the two:
- A lump sum agreement effectively ends the relationship between the injured worker and the workers compensation carrier. Once the lump sum is paid, the carrier is no longer obligated to cover any costs related to the worker’s injury. Weekly benefits, on the other hand, are ongoing until the worker’s injury related costs are paid.
- The lump sum is a one-time, final payment, even if the work injury turns out to be more serious than first understood. Weekly benefits can be adjusted in terms of amount if additional costs arise. This includes unanticipated surgery, medications, physical therapy and other additional costs. If you are unsure of your medical prognosis, workers comp lawyers New York employees hire may suggest you do not take the lump sum option.
- Depending on your injury, you may receive more compensation from either a Section 32 lump sum or from weekly payments. After a careful review of your case, one of our workers comp lawyers New York injured workers hire to represent them may provide guidance in choosing which option is best for you.
If you’re trying to decide whether or not you should take a Section 32 lump sum settlement, one of the most important factors to consider is the medical coverage for your injury. As long as an injured worker is receiving weekly benefits, the employer’s workers compensation insurance carrier is liable for all medical coverage. If an injured worker decides to take a lump sum settlement, then, in the majority of cases, the insurance carrier is no longer responsible for any future medical expenses for the injury. In some cases, part of the agreement may be that the insurance company will continue to be liable for any and all future medical expenses, but this is typically not the norm.
If it turns out that you need ongoing medical treatment for your injury or illness after settling your case, you might not be able to receive more money in addition to your Section 32 lump sum. Your own health insurance coverage rules may or may not cover future medical care in this situation. If you do not have health insurance coverage, you may be eligible for Medicare; however, if your settlement was more than $25,000, there may need to be a Workers’ Compensation Medicare Set-Aside Arrangement (WCMSA) made.
A WCMSA is a financial agreement made with the government which takes a portion of your Section 32 settlement and applies that amount towards your future medical expenses. Once those allocated funds have been depleted, Medicare would begin paying for medical treatment of that work-related injury or illness.
Contact One of Our Workers Comp Lawyers New York Clients Call
For injured workers in New York, deciding if a Section 32 lump sum agreement is the right choice can be challenging. You don’t need to make that decision on your own. If you are looking for legal guidance among the many workers comp lawyers in New York, talk to us about how we may help you. At Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C. our attorneys have guided thousands of injured workers through the often stressful workers compensation process.
As trusted workers comp lawyers New York offers, we understand that dealing with a work-related injury or illness can be very stressful to the victim and their family. You are likely dealing with significant pain from your injuries, and you may also be facing uncertainty about your future.
To hire a team of dedicated and dependable workers comp lawyers New York has to offer, call us today at (516) 595-0106.