Senate Bill No. 2380

Senate Bill No. 2380.Expanded Workers’ Compensation Benefits Through Bill

If N.J. Gov. Murphy signs Senate Bill No. 2380, it would expand access to workers’ compensation benefits for New Jersey workers. Under the bill, a “prima facie presumption” is created; if the employee meets the standard of an “essential employee” and contracts the coronavirus, it will be presumed to have been work-related.[1] The bill passed both houses in the N.J. legislature on July 30, 2020.[2]

Relief for Essential Workers if Signed into Law

Essential employees have been part of our economic recovery, allowing society to function during a global pandemic. They have worked in an unprecedented and difficult time; when many Americans have been out of work, they have stepped up to the plate. It only makes sense for Gov. Murphy to sign this bill into law. Hard-working essential workers deserve relief if they should happen to experience negative consequences or a decreased quality of life because of transmission.

Examples of Potential Compensable Injuries

Those who have lost loved ones due to the coronavirus and were considered essential workers may be able to file a claim based on N.J.S.A. 34:15-13 to recover for death benefits and burial expenses.[3] If an essential worker experienced permanent hearing loss after contracting the coronavirus, this may also be compensable under N.J.S.A. 34:15-35.13.[4] Shortness of breath, a cardiovascular symptom of COVID-19, is also compensable under N.J.S.A. 34:15-7.2.[5] Injuries from shortness of breath include brain injury, stroke, and cardiac arrest, all causes of brain hypoxia.[6]

Trust Us to Handle Your Case

The Workplace Lawyers has over 130 years collective experience through its partners. We are on the forefront of new workers’ compensation legislation, often helping to pioneer greater benefits for N.J. workers.[7] If you are someone you know were injured, schedule a call today for a free consultation. We treat every case with the manner and respect it deserves.

[1] Fiol-Matta, Lia, and Ty Hyderally. “Protections Are On the Way for Essential Workers Who Test Positive for COVID-19.” HYDERALLY & ASSOCIATES, P.C., Hyderally & Associates, P.C., 30 July 2020, www.employmentlit.com/2020/07/30/protections-are-on-the-way-for-essential-workers-who-test-positive-for-covid-19/.

[2] “Bills 2020-2021.” New Jersey Legislature, New Jersey Office of Legislative Services, www.njleg.state.nj.us/bills/BillView.asp.

[3] “2009 New Jersey Code :: TITLE 34 – LABOR AND WORKMEN’S COMPENSATION :: 34:15 :: 34:15-13 – Death Benefits, Burial Expenses; Computation and Distribution.” Justia Law, Justia, law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2009/title-34/34-15/34-15-13/.

[4] “2009 New Jersey Code :: TITLE 34 – LABOR AND WORKMEN’S COMPENSATION :: 34:15 :: 34:15-35.13 – Liability for Hearing Loss;  Previous Hearing Loss; Audiometric Testing.” Justia Law, Justia, law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2009/title-34/34-15/34-15-35-13/.

[5] “2009 New Jersey Code :: TITLE 34 – LABOR AND WORKMEN’S COMPENSATION :: 34:15 :: 34:15-7.2 – Claim Based on Cardiovascular or Cerebral Vascular Causes; Preponderance of Credible Evidence of Proof of Cause by Work Effort.” Justia Law, Justia, law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2009/title-34/34-15/34-15-7-2/.

[6] Badii, Chitra. “Brain Hypoxia: Causes, Symptoms, and Diagnosis.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 29 Sept. 2018, www.healthline.com/health/cerebral-hypoxia.

[7] “Firm History – New Jersey Workers Compensation Law Firm: Employment Lawyers.” Livingston DiMarzio, LLP, 29 Jan. 2020, www.workplacelawyers.com/firm-history/.

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