Recently, the New York State Appellate Division held that after he settled his medical malpractice lawsuit, a former Major League baseball umpire could not continue to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits. Mark Hirschbeck, who had been an umpire in Major League Baseball for over fifteen years was forced to retire after surgery was unsuccessful. However, because his injuries were work related, he was able to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits until the medical malpractice suit concluded.

The suit originated from a hip injury sustained in 2002, which left him permanently disabled after complications arose from hip replacement surgery. Hirschbeck brought a medical malpractice and products liability suit against the manufacturer of the artificial hip that resulted in a $3.2 million settlement. After the settlement was made, the Workers’ Compensation insurer claimed that a 2007 agreement with Hirschbeck allowed the suspension of benefits. The Workers’ Compensation Board ruled for the insurer, and the Appellate Division affirmed.

In order to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits if you have sustained a work related injury, the employer must be covered by Workers’ Compensation. Most employers are required by law to have Workers’ Compensation insurance, but there are exceptions. Additionally, to receive benefits, the recipient must be an employee. Independent contractors are not covered by the insurance.

If you have suffered injury due to a workplace accident, contact an attorney who is experienced in Workers’ Compensation claims.  The attorneys at McIntyre, Donohue, Accardi, Salmonson & Riordan, LLP have experience representing clients before Workers’ Compensation boards throughout New York City and Long Island, including Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Nassau County, and Suffolk County.  For a consultation, call (866)557-7500.