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Workers’ Compensation for Domestic Workers

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Domestic workers provide critical services for the families for whom they work. From caring for children and the elderly to cooking and cleaning, many large and busy families, as well as those with special needs, would not be able to function without them. They are also numerous: the National Domestic Workers Alliance estimates that there are over 200,000 domestic workers in New York City, while 2.7 million households statewide employ a domestic worker. While domestic work may not be as hazardous as certain other occupations, accidents and injuries do happen. When an accident or injury keeps domestic workers out of a job, they may be entitled to workers’ compensation, as a Long Island domestic worker injury lawyer explains. 

Common Workplace Injuries Among Domestic Workers

Domestic work is typically not considered extremely dangerous compared to other traditionally hazardous occupations such as construction and agriculture. But domestic work can encompass a vast array of duties, many of which expose domestic workers to the same hazards as workers in other industries. Domestic workers are particularly prone to the following accidents and injuries:

  • Car accidents: Chauffeurs, nannies, home health aides, and any other domestic workers whose duties include driving are at risk of injuries from car accidents
  • Slips, falls, burns, and broken limbs: Domestic workers whose duties include cooking and cleaning are at risk of injuries caused by burns from cooking mishaps and slipping and falling on slick surfaces, to name a few
  • Infectious illnesses: Domestic workers in households with children or those with a high amount of “coming and going” are prone to picking up infectious illnesses (including COVID-19)
  • Crime: Households that employ domestic workers tend to be wealthier than average and are therefore targets for burglary, with domestic workers often being in the wrong place at the wrong time

If you are a domestic worker and suffered an injury that you believe to be work-related, please contact a Long Island domestic worker injury lawyer who can help you evaluate your case. 

Are Domestic Workers Covered by Workers’ Compensation in New York? 

Domestic workers who are employed forty hours or more per week by the same employer are required to be covered by workers’ compensation coverage. This includes chauffeurs, nannies, home health aides, au pairs, nurses, babysitters, maids, cooks, housekeepers, laundry workers, butlers, companions, and gardeners, including full-time sitters or companions and live-in maids. Time spent at the residence while eating and sleeping, as well as time spent away from the residence running errands, counts toward the 40-hour weekly total. The only domestic workers who are not covered under the workers’ compensation program are “casual laborers,” which are individuals (including minors) who do yard work or occasional chores in and around a once-family, owner-occupied dwelling. 

Contact a Long Island Domestic Worker Injury Lawyer for More Information 

If you were injured on the job as a domestic worker, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, depending upon the specific facts of your case. To speak to an attorney who can help you navigate the workers’ compensation process, please contact a domestic worker injury lawyer at Turley, Redmond & Rosasco by using our online form or calling 877-693-2529.

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