The Statute of Limitations for Workers' Compensation in New York


The New York Workers’ Compensation Board regulates employment insurance requirements for employers who conduct business within the state. Employers must purchase workers’ compensation insurance policies for their employees. To receive coverage under the state’s compensation laws, employees must comply with the legal statute of limitations laws. The limitations periods determine allowable time frames in which employees must file their claims to qualify for benefits.

Notification of Immediate Injuries

Employees who suffer an on-the-job illness or injury must submit a written claim to her employer as soon as possible, but no later than 30 days. She must also submit a written claim form with the New York Workers’ Compensation Board as soon as possible. Employees must submit claims by filing an Employee Claim Form, C-3 with their local District Office. Employees may submit claims to employers in any written document. However, employees who suffer work-related illnesses or injuries that arise later have an extended period to submit claims to both employers and the state.

Notification of Latent Injuries

Since some injuries or illnesses do not manifest themselves immediately, New York allows employees who suffer latent job-related diseases or injuries to submit claims within two years of when they knew, or should have known of those injuries.

Employee’s Rights to Determination

Once employees submit their written notifications with the Workers’ Compensation Board and provide written notification to their employers, their claims progress to the official determination process. Within 48 hours of learning of an injury or illness, an employee must obtain written medical determination from a physician. The physician must submit a completed C-4, Doctor’s Initial Report Form, and send results to the employer, insurance carrier, employee and any designated representatives of the employee. Within 10 days of receiving notification of injuries from an employee, the employer must report the injury to the board by completing a C-2 Form, Employer’s Report of Work-Related Injury/Illness. The insurance carrier has 14 days to provide a statement of rights to the employee. Within 18 days of receiving this C-2 from the employer, insurers begin paying benefits.

Appellate Statute of Limitations Periods

The “should have known” requirement is determinable by judicial review and requires the Board to conduct a fact-sensitive analysis. Employees who receive denials of their claims based on expiration of the applicable statute of limitations period may appeal their denials with the Workers’ Compensation Board and request a hearing before the workers’ compensation law judge. Within 30 days of the judge’s determination, claimants may appeal the judge’s decision by written request. The claim proceeds to a three-member panel of board members who review the judge’s decision and may send it back to the judge for review, uphold the judge’s decision or overturn the judge’s decision. Claimants who disagree with the three-member panel’s decision must file a written appeal with the Supreme Court of the State of New York’s Appellate Division within 30 days of receiving the panel’s decision.


Since disability and employment laws can frequently change, do not use this information as a substitute for legal advice. Seek advice through an attorney licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction.

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