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The Perecman Firm

New York, NY Personal Injury Blog

Prominent Lawyer Says Insurance Companies Thwart Efforts Of Employees Seeking Workers Compensation Benefits In New York State

New York personal injury and workers compensation attorney, David Perecman, is speaking out against the insurance companies and their legal battles against the injured

NEW YORK, N.Y. May 18, 2009 -One of New York’s best personal injury attorneys, David Perecman, is helping the public understand their rights against insurance companies and workers compensation benefits. Attorneys know the battle to breathe with damaged lungs pales in comparison to Daniel Arrigo’s ongoing struggle with Zurich North America. The giant insurance carrier is putting up an aggressive legal fight to block the 53-year-old construction worker, and father of three, from collecting the much-needed workers compensation benefits he says are his due.

Arrigo, a 9/11 responder diagnosed with severe lung disease from exposure to dust and toxic fumes he inhaled during the four-month clean-up at Ground Zero, is caught between the tangled web of rules and regulations of a slow-moving New York State Workers Compensation Board and the wily tactics of Zurich’s attorneys who are skilled at fighting the claims of 9/11 workers.

“Mr. Arrigo’s situation is indicative of the shortcomings inherent in the whole system in this state,” said David Perecman, attorney at a New York personal injury and worker’s compensation law firm and a co-chair of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association’s Labor Law Committee.

“Even when insurance companies agree that there is a legitimate injury,” Perecman explained, “problems surface for workers that can lead to delays in payment of compensation claims. In the case of Mr. Arrigo, excessive delays can mean eviction from his family’s home in Staten Island for falling behind on the rent.”

According to media reports, Arrigo thought he had won his legal battle months ago when a judge ruled that his illness and injuries were work-related. But Zurich’s lawyers appealed the ruling, challenging medical evidence that had been submitted ten months earlier by Arrigo’s lawyer.

“Sometimes the deck is stacked against the employee,” Perecman said. “Insurance companies have whole teams of lawyers part of whose job it is to block workers’ claims. What’s more, most workers injured on the job are not permitted to sue their employer for damages in civil court.”

“Since Tishman Corporation provides worker’s compensation insurance to its employees,” David Perecman, New York personal injury attorney said, “a Tishman employee, and by extension members of Mr. Arrigo’s family, are only entitled to file a workers’ compensation claim against Tishman Corporation. He is not eligible to bring a lawsuit against Tishman in civil court, nor are his family members.”

Perecman said that his firm handled a similar case involving a worker who was seriously injured at a worksite when a piece of metal fell on him.

“Unlike Mr. Arrigo, this worker was receiving compensation benefits until his employer’s insurance company pulled the rug out from underneath him and required that he be re-examined by three of their own consultants, who later filed a report claiming his herniated discs had recovered and that he could return to work, said New York workers compensation attorney, David Perecman.”

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