Occupational Safety and Health
DC 37 WTC Site Workers and Volunteer
Important Workers Compensation Update from Mt. Sinai
Dear WTC Responder:
When you came to the World Trade Center Worker and Volunteer Medical Screening Program, you received information on some benefits you may be entitled to. If you were injured or became ill as a result of working on the 9/11 rescue, recovery and clean-up, you may be eligible for New York State Workers’ Compensation and the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund.
All claims should be filed within 2 years of your first day working at the site. If you think you have an illness or injury related to your rescue, recovery or clean-up work following the 9/11 attacks and you are interested in applying for New York State Workers’ Compensation, the first step you need to take is to file a “C-3 form.”
By filing this form, you will “stop the clock” and preserve your right to file a claim. Once you file the”C-3″, you will eventually have to get medical documentation stating that your illness or injury is a result of your WTC work. However, by filing the “C-3”, you have additional time to get the rest of the paperwork in order.
Not everyone who files for Workers’ Compensation will receive benefits. Workers’ Compensation claims go through a legal process during which you have to provide medical and other documentation for your claim. Whether you will receive compensation or not is determined by the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board.
Some of the benefits provided by Workers’ Compensation are:
- Medical Care. If you receive Workers’ Compensation for your WTC-related illness or injury, your medical care for that particular injury or illness may be provided for the rest of your life—even if you are no longer doing the same work or if you are not working at all.
- Medications and Travel Expenses. Workers’ Compensation pays for the cost of travel to your doctors and the cost of medications you need for your WTC-related illness.
- Wage Replacement and Other Cash Awards. Workers’ Compensation may provide partial wage replacement for time you lose from work because of your illness or injury. There are other cash awards available as well, depending on how extensive your injury or illness is.
September 11th Victim Compensation Fund
All claims must be filed by December 22, 2003.
You may be eligible for cash awards, including awards for pain and suffering, if you meet the following criteria:
- WHO: Rescue and recovery workers. Most workers who come through the World Trade Center Worker and Volunteer Medical Screening Program will qualify if they meet the following requirements.
- WHERE: Present at the Site: On the pile or in any area contiguous to the site that was sufficiently close that there was a demonstrable risk of physical harm.
- WHEN: In the “immediate aftermath”: The injury or illness being compensated must have been sustained in the first 96 hours after the attacks on the WTC.
- WHAT: Physical injury to the body. Your injury must have caused you to be hospitalized as an in-patient for at least 24 hours or your injury must have caused either temporary or permanent, partial or total physical disability, incapacity or disfigurement. “Physical injury” includes breathing and sinus problems that are disabling.
Follow-Up Health Care Services
If you have symptoms as a result of a World Trade Center exposure, you may contact the Health for Heroes Program at 212-241-9059. The Health for Heroes Program can offer diagnosis and treatment for people who became ill as a result of their participation in the World Trade Center rescue, recovery and clean-up efforts. If Health for Heroes physicians diagnose a WTC-related health problem, you may file for Workers’ Compensation. There are no out-of-pocket expenses at the Health for Heroes Program. If you need tests or medical treatment that cannot be conducted at the clinic, the Health for Heroes staff will provide appropriate referrals. If your insurance does not cover tests or treatment or you do not have insurance, the Health for Heroes staff will work with you to try to arrange for access to other resources for payment.
In the event that you do not have WTC-related symptoms, but are concerned about your WTC exposure or any other exposure at your work, you may call 212-241-3444 for information regarding one of the New York State Occupational Health Clinics. You may incur charges for your visit to the Occupational Health Clinics.
If you believe you may be entitled to Workers’ Compensation or to the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, call the Screening Program at 212-241-3444.
Don’t delay. These benefits can last for many years to come, but you will lose out if you don’t file on time.