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Firefighter Disability Claim Attorney

Our experienced New York City disability attorneys at Seelig Law Offices regularly assist New York City Fire Department (FDNY) members who were injured on the job. These men and women risk their lives every day by running into burning buildings to save the people of New York. If they are permanently disabled in the line of duty, they are entitled to special pension benefits. Recently hired firefighters qualify for similar but less lucrative coverage. If you’re a firefighter who has been injured on the job and are seeking disability benefits, contact our disability claims lawyers to help you through the process or if you’ve been denied.

Firefighter Disability Claim Attorney

Disability Benefits as a Firefighter

According to the New York City Administrative Code, an injured Tier 2 firefighter is entitled to a lifetime disability pension that totals seventy-five percent of the individual’s final average salary, if they suffer an injury during city service that leaves them unable to work. Unfortunately, not all injuries make one eligible for a disability pension. That is why it is imperative that you contact an attorney to evaluate and handle your claim.

Tier 2 firefighters are also eligible for the Heart, Stroke, and Lung Bills. These New York laws create a presumption that disabling heart, stroke, and lung conditions are the result of employment as a firefighter. Firefighters involved in work at certain locations and during a certain time, relating to the September 11, 2001, terror attacks, and who are afflicted with a qualifying condition, are also eligible for the World Trade Center Bill. All four bills provide firefighters who qualify with a special pension benefit. Recently hired firefighters have different disability pension coverage.

If you’re a firefighter who has suffered a disabling injury or illness that prevents you from working, you may be entitled to disability benefits, such as:

  • Workers’ Compensation: If you sustain an injury or illness while on duty as a firefighter, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits can provide coverage for medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation services.
  • Disability Retirement: Many firefighters are covered by disability retirement plans through their employers or pension systems. If you become permanently disabled due to a duty-related injury or illness, you may be eligible for disability retirement benefits, which can provide financial support for you and your family.
  • Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): If your disability prevents you from working in any occupation, not just firefighting, you may qualify for SSDI benefits. These benefits are available to individuals who have paid into the Social Security system through payroll taxes and have accumulated sufficient work credits.

Qualifying for Disability Benefits

Qualifying for disability benefits as a firefighter can be a complex process, as eligibility criteria vary depending on the specific benefit program. In general, to qualify for disability benefits, you must meet certain requirements related to your injury or illness and its impact on your ability to work. While specific requirements may vary depending on the program, here are some common qualifications:

Duty-Related Injury or Illness

Your injury or illness must be directly related to your duties as a firefighter. This means it must have occurred while you were performing your job duties or as a result of occupational exposure to hazards such as fire, smoke, chemicals, or physical trauma.

Medical Documentation

You’ll need to provide medical documentation from a qualified healthcare provider confirming the nature and severity of your injury or illness. This may include diagnoses, treatment records, imaging studies, and assessments of your functional limitations.

Inability to Work

You must demonstrate that your injury or illness prevents you from performing your duties as a firefighter. This may involve proving that you’re unable to meet the physical demands of the job or that your condition poses a safety risk to yourself or others.

Duration of Disability

Depending on the disability benefits program, you may need to show that your disability is expected to last for a certain period of time, such as 12 months or longer. Some programs may require ongoing medical evaluations to assess your eligibility for benefits.

Compliance with Program Requirements

Be sure to adhere to any deadlines, reporting requirements, or other procedural rules outlined by the disability benefit program. Failure to follow these guidelines could jeopardize your eligibility for benefits.

Legal Advocacy

Seeking the assistance of an experienced disability attorney can greatly improve your chances of obtaining benefits. A knowledgeable attorney can help you navigate the complex application process, gather necessary evidence, and advocate on your behalf in the event of a dispute or denial of benefits.

If you are a firefighter injured on or off the job, Seelig Law Offices offers a free consultation and does not recover a fee unless you receive a disability pension. Contact our New York City disability law attorneys by calling 212-766-0600 or filling out our online contact form to schedule a consultation.

How Seelig Law Offices Will Help You with Your Claim

Filing a disability claim can be an overwhelming process, especially when recovering from an injury. Your physical and emotional health should be your priority during this time. At Seelig Law Offices, we understand the challenges you face and are committed to providing comprehensive legal support to help you obtain the benefits you deserve.

Guidance Throughout the Process

Our team of experienced disability attorneys specializes in handling firefighter injury claims. We have a deep understanding of the unique challenges faced by firefighters and are well-versed in the laws and regulations governing disability benefits for first responders.

Thorough Case Evaluation

We’ll conduct a thorough evaluation of your case to determine the best course of action. This includes reviewing your medical records, assessing the extent of your injuries, and identifying any potential obstacles to your claim.

Evidence Gathering

Gathering the necessary documentation for your disability claim can be daunting. We’ll assist you in obtaining and organizing all the medical records, employment history, and other evidence needed to support your claim.

Strong Legal Advocacy

Our attorneys will serve as your dedicated advocates throughout the claims process. We’ll handle all communications with insurance companies, government agencies, and other parties involved, ensuring that your rights are protected every step of the way.

Appeals Representation

If your claim is denied or disputed, we’ll aggressively advocate for your rights through the appeals process. Our attorneys have a proven track record of success in overturning denials and securing benefits for injured firefighters.

Seek Maximum Compensation

Our goal is to maximize your benefits to ensure you receive the financial support you need to cover medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and other related expenses. We’ll explore all available avenues for compensation to help you achieve the best possible outcome.

No Upfront Fees

Worried about the cost of legal representation? Don’t be. At Seelig Law Offices, we handle firefighter injury claims on a contingency fee basis, meaning you won’t pay any upfront fees. We only get paid if we successfully recover compensation on your behalf.

Your Support System

When you choose Seelig Law Offices, you’re not just hiring an attorney – you’re gaining a dedicated advocate who is committed to fighting for your rights and securing the benefits you deserve. We’ll stand by your side every step of the way, providing unwavering support from initial consultation to case resolution.

The lawyers at Seelig Law Offices are dedicated to providing the highest quality representation on behalf of our clients. Headed by attorney Philip Seelig, we place a high priority on delivering honest, understandable counsel to clients at all times. Our successful reputation in handling disability claims sets us apart from the rest, and we are proud to have helped countless individuals secure the benefits they need to move forward with their lives after a debilitating injury.

Common Injuries to Seek Compensation For

Firefighters face numerous hazards and risks in the line of duty, often leading to severe injuries that can impact their ability to work and maintain their quality of life. If you’ve sustained any of the following common injuries as a firefighter, you may be eligible to seek compensation through a disability claim:

  • Burn injuries
  • Smoke inhalation
  • Traumatic injuries
  • Musculoskeletal injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Heat stress and dehydration
  • Chemical exposure
  • Cardiovascular conditions

While this list is not a comprehensive list of all potential injuries, it highlights some of the most common types of injuries that firefighters may experience on the job. If you have suffered any of these injuries or other work-related conditions that have left you unable to work, our team is here to help you navigate the complex process of filing a disability claim.

Seelig Law Offices Is Here to Help with Your Claim

Seelig Law Offices is here to help with your claim every step of the way. Our team understands the challenges that injured firefighters face when seeking disability benefits, and we are dedicated to providing the support and guidance you need during this difficult time. Call our office today for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Firefighter Disability Claim Attorney FAQs

How do I know if I qualify for disability benefits as a firefighter?

To qualify for disability benefits as a firefighter, you typically need to demonstrate that you have sustained an injury or illness that prevents you from performing your duties as a firefighter. Consulting with an experienced firefighter disability claim attorney can help assess your eligibility and guide you through the claims process.

What types of disability benefits are available for injured firefighters?

Injured firefighters may be eligible for various types of disability benefits, including temporary disability benefits, permanent disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation services. Temporary disability benefits provide financial assistance while you recover from your injuries, while permanent disability benefits offer ongoing support if your injuries prevent you from returning to work. Vocational rehabilitation services can help you transition to alternative employment if you’re unable to continue working as a firefighter.

Can I file a disability claim for a pre-existing condition aggravated by my firefighting duties?

Yes, you may be able to file a disability claim for a pre-existing condition that has been aggravated or exacerbated by your firefighting duties. If your pre-existing condition has worsened due to the physical demands or occupational hazards of firefighting, you may be eligible for disability benefits.

How long does it take to receive disability benefits for a firefighter injury?

The timeline for receiving disability benefits for a firefighter injury can vary depending on factors such as the severity of your injuries, the complexity of your claim, and the efficiency of the claims process. In some cases, you may start receiving temporary disability benefits shortly after filing your claim, while permanent disability benefits may take longer to approve.

Can I appeal a denied firefighter disability claim?

Yes, if your firefighter disability claim is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision. The appeals process typically involves submitting additional evidence, attending hearings, and presenting your case before an administrative law judge. It’s essential to act quickly and seek legal representation from a skilled attorney who can navigate the appeals process effectively and advocate for your rights.

Will I lose my job if I file a disability claim as a firefighter?

Filing a disability claim as a firefighter should not result in automatic termination of your employment. Under state and federal laws, firefighters are protected from discrimination based on disability, and employers are required to provide reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities. However, it’s essential to be aware of your rights and consult with a knowledgeable attorney to ensure your employer complies with the law throughout the disability claims process.

How much does it cost to hire a firefighter disability claim attorney?

At Seelig Law Offices, we only get paid if we win your case. Our firefighter disability claim attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means that you won’t owe us any fees unless we successfully secure disability benefits for you. This allows you to pursue your claim without worrying about upfront costs or out-of-pocket expenses. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case and learn more about our legal services.

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