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How working more than one job impacts workers’ compensation

On Behalf of | Dec 7, 2023 | Workers' Compensation

In New York, many people work more than one job. For some, this is necessary to make ends meet. Others are trying to earn money at one job while working in a preferred vocation for the future. Still others are simply moonlighting.

Regardless of the circumstances, those who are injured while they are working two or more jobs will have questions about how workers’ compensation accounts for their lost wages in its entirety. This can be as much of a worry as getting approved for workers’ compensation benefits, receiving treatment for the injuries and knowing whether there will be a job available when they are ready to return. Being up to date on the facts is imperative.

Average weekly wage and concurrent employment

The average weekly wage – referred to as AWW – is calculated by looking at the worker’s earnings for the previous 52 weeks before they were injured. It is not based on pay after taxes and other deductions. It is based on gross wages and overtime.

There are factors that could affect how it is calculated. For example, if the person did not work the full year before the injury, they worked fewer than four days per week, or they had different jobs for the past year. Those who were younger than 25 and had more than one employer when they were injured could have a different wage expectancy. The wages could be added together to come to a figure.

Concurrent employment is addressed under workers’ compensation law. In addition to how AWW is calculated, the employer for whom the employee was working at the time of the injury is also key during the process. That employer is liable for the benefits the injured worker would get even if they did not have another job.

When additional wages are awarded due to the concurrent employment, that will be paid by the employer the injured worker was performing duties for at the time. The employer can be reimbursed for those wages if they meet the criteria under the law. That employer remains liable for medical costs the worker accrues when being treated.

Workers’ compensation covers for those working second jobs

Injured workers and their families will want answers as to how the workers’ compensation process works, what can be done to maximize benefits and what steps are available to ensure they have a good chance at the claim being approved. An area that can be confusing is how people who worked more than one job will have their wages accounted for accurately and if the AWW can be higher.

For these and other concerns about workers’ compensation, it is wise to be fully protected and have accurate information about all aspects of a case. In some instances, there are disputes that cause delays or outright denials. For all parts of a claim, it is useful to have a grasp of the process and what can be done to make a full recovery physically, personally and financially.