Category Archives: Firm News

Join Us In Supporting Cancer Research At The Relay For Life On June 7-8

I started writing to impart vital information to readers about Workers’ Compensation. As a practitioner in this field for almost 25 years, I want to provide guidance on procedure, insight to those who have been trying to maneuver within the system, and knowledge about benefits injured workers may be  entitled to if they get hurt on the job. 

In this post I will veer off topic to tell you about a very important event coming up next month – the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life at Charles Park in Howard Beach on June 7-8 starting at 6:00 p.m. I am proud to say that my law firm – Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano LLP – is one of the proud sponsors of this event.   

I am sure that anyone reading this column has been either personally affected by cancer or knows of someone who has been. We have shared the fear, the shock, the anger and the determination of those who have been diagnosed with this disease. We have shared the tears – and in some instances the final acceptance – with loved ones that their personal fight was too big to win. The Relay for Life helps raise funds and awareness to save lives from cancer. It is a way for us to remember those who have lost their personal battle, to celebrate those who have survived, and to fight back against the disease that has affected us all.  

According to the American Cancer Society, cancer remains the second most common cause of death in the United States – accounting for nearly 1 of every 4 deaths. In 2014, there will be an estimated 1,665,540 newly diagnosed cancer cases, and 585,720 cancer deaths in the United States. Needless to say, these statistics are staggering. We as a community need to pull together to help prevent any further unnecessary deaths. The Relay for Life is one event that allows our friends and families to get together for the common goal of raising money to fight cancer in a way that will be fun. We can share experiences with each other while having a sense of camaraderie. 

Here is the link – Come join a team or create your own. If you don’t want to walk, you can be a volunteer to set up, coordinate, or clean up. If you can’t walk or attend, then please consider making a donation. You can dedicate a Luminaria bag — which can be personalized with a name, photo, message or drawing and are illuminated after dark – in memory or honor of a friend or loved one at the Relay for Life.   

The good news is that there are more than 14 million cancer survivors. The goal is to reduce the number of those who are diagnosed with cancer in the first place. Whatever role you choose to play in this fight is up to you, but this event shows that you don’t have to engage in the fight alone. You will meet people who have been caregivers and those who are survivors. We will meet as strangers, but leave as comrades in the fight against cancer.     


Catherine M. Stanton is a senior partner in the law firm of Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano, LLP. She focuses on the area of Workers’ Compensation, having helped thousands of injured workers navigate a highly complex system and obtain all the benefits to which they were entitled. Ms. Stanton has been honored as a New York Super Lawyer, is the past president of the New York Workers’ Compensation Bar Association, the immediate past president of the Workers’ Injury Law and Advocacy Group, and is an officer in several organizations dedicated to injured workers and their families. She can be reached at 800.692.3717.

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Senior Partner Jordan Ziegler Honored By Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police Benevolent Association

On April 10th, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police Benevolent Association (MTA PBA) recognized Senior Partner Jordan Ziegler for his many years of service and success representing their members for their work related injury legal needs. We are proud of Jordan’s dedication to the MTA PBA and his tireless representation of all injured workers.

Formed on August 10th, 1998, the purpose of the MTA PBA is “to promote and develop a fraternal spirit among all members, to aid our fellow members upon necessity or emergency, to advance the general welfare and efficiency of the department, to promote legislation beneficial to our members and their families and to oppose legislation detrimental to those interests”

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Congratulations To Our 2014 SuperLawyers

We are proud to congratulate each of Victor Pasternack,Barbara Doblin TilkerJordan ZieglerCatherine StantonEdgar Romano and Robert Saminskyfor being named to the New York Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2014. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers.

This is the 9th consecutive year Ziegler has been selected, the 8th consecutive selection for Tilker and Stanton, the 6th for Pasternack and Saminsky and the 5th for Romano.

We are honored that so many of our attorneys have a multi-year recurring presence on this prestigious list. 

Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a rigorous multi-phased process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates, and peer reviews by practice area.

The first Super Lawyers list was published in 1991.

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Partner Matthew A. Funk Elected New York State Trial Lawyers Association Deputy Treasurer

Partner Matthew Funk

We congratulate Partner Matthew A. Funk on his election as Deputy Treasurer of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association. His term will begin on July 1st. Mr. Funk has been practicing law since 1999 and became a partner at the firm in 2007. He is a member of the Injured Workers Bar Association, participating in online round table discussions regarding the rights of injured workers. He is a Workers Compensation Committee member of the New York Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH). Mr. Funk regularly lectures on the workers compensation law to various labor organizations. Currently, he is actively engaged in extensive workers compensation litigation.


Senior Partner Catherine Stanton

We also congratulate Senior Partner Catherine Stanton on her election as a Director of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association. Ms. Stanton began working with the firm as an attorney in 1990 and became a partner in 1998.  She was the 2012 president of WILG, Workers’ Injury & Law Advocacy Groupthe national non-profit membership organization dedicated to representing the interests of millions of workers and their families who, each year, suffer the consequences of workplace injuries and illnesses. Ms. Stanton has once been named as a Super Lawyer each year from 2007-2013 in the area of workers compensation by Super Lawyers magazine. In addition, Super Lawyers named Ms. Stanton one of the Top Women Attorneys in New York for 2013.

About The New York State Trial Lawyers Association

The NYSTLA was founded in 1953 by a group of trial lawyers who were concerned that New York had no forum for plaintiffs’ lawyers. Today, the New York State Trial Lawyers Association is a 4,000-member trade association.

NYSTLA assures that the wrongfully injured have full access to the civil justice system. The organization is dedicated to the preservation of the federal and state constitution rights to trial by jury. They fight to see that:

  • injured people are not barred from the civil justice system;
  • wrongdoers are not immunized from liability;
  • juries are free to determine the proper amount of compensation without arbitrary legislative interference; and
  • obstacles are not placed in the way of litigating all meritorious actions.

NYSTLA also supports proposals to increase available insurance. When needed, NYSTLA works at the federal level to assure that our clients’ rights are not limited by Congress. NYSTLA does not hesitate to use the courts to advocate on behalf of consumers.

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Legally Speaking – Volunteer Firefighters and Ambulance Workers

Catherine M. Stanton
Catherine M. Stanton

Catherine M. Stanton

Hello friends!  Today’s editorial is going to discuss Volunteer Firefighters and Ambulance Workers and their rights under New York State Workers’ Compensation Law.

While paid New York City firefighters are covered by special contract, and not covered under New York State Workers’ Compensation Law, all New York State active volunteer firefighters in a county, city, town, village or fire district are entitled to benefits under the law if they are injured in the line of duty.  Most New York State active volunteer ambulance workers are entitled to benefits as well.

To be entitled to benefits, a firefighter must be engaged in activities pursuant to orders or authorization that include, but are not limited to, participation in fire drills, parades and funerals; travel to and from fire calls or authorized activities; firehouse duties; property inspections; and maintenance and repair of equipment.

Volunteer ambulance workers must be engaged in duties at the ambulance facility or elsewhere, including but not limited to, public exhibitions and drills; attendance at training school; travel to and from calls directly related to the prevention of accidents or other disasters; delivery of emergency health care; instruction in ambulance duties; or maintaining equipment.  The benefits depend on the seriousness of the injury and the length of disability.

 A determination of the benefits will be made…

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Legally Speaking – Afraid To File A Claim?

As a 25-year attorney in the field of Workers’ Compensation, I have represented thousands of injured workers and heard all kinds of stories — many involving workers who didn’t file a Workers’ Comp claim for one reason or another. Some of the most frequent reasons I’ve heard from workers who get injured on the job and don’t file a claim include fear of getting fired, or intimidation by a system that seems cumbersome and hard to navigate.

First of all, it is against the law for an employer to fire you in retaliation for filing a Workers’ Compensation claim.  You should know that Workers’ Compensation is a no fault system. In exchange for timely payment of medical and indemnity benefits, workers gave up the right to sue their employer.   These laws went into effect in the early 20th Century as a result of social reform and tragedy.  While every state in the nation has some form of Workers’ Compensation laws, they all vary in scope and date of inception.  In New York, the pivotal event that culminated in the passage of Workers’ Compensation legislation occurred in 1911 after the horror of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, where 146 individuals perished — some burned to death while others leapt to their deaths when they tried to escape the fire and found the emergency exits locked.  This was a preventable tragedy caused by unsafe work conditions and was a catalyst for…

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Why The Republicans Should Not Cut Food Stamps

Facts about food stamps. Click on this image to see it full size.

Today’s post comes from guest author Paul J. McAndrew, Jr., from Paul McAndrew Law Firm.

I write about a debate now occurring in Congress in which the GOP is threatening millions of American families, including 200,000 Iowa households.  The debate is over food stamps, now known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (“SNAP”).

To understand the problem, we need only review the survey-report issued by the Department of Agriculture on September 4.  (Alisha Coleman-JensenMark Nord, Anita Singh, “Household Food Security in the United States in 2012”).  The report shows that nearly 49 million Americans lived in “food insecure” households last year.  This means family members lack consistent access to adequate food throughout the year.  In short, 49 million Americans (over 16 times the Iowa population) went hungry for long periods in 2012.  Worse, children were found to be hungry in 10% of all U.S. families with children.  The agency found that hunger rates since the 2007 recession are much higher than before. 

Many people have a misunderstanding of this hunger; many think the hungry are the same persons who are homeless.  In fact, in most cases the hungry are persons who work at low-paying jobs or are disabled from work.

The GOP (mostly the House GOP) wants to cut food stamps.  Yet, food stamps have been the centerpiece of our country’s safety net for the poor.  Benefits are adjusted for income.  Recipients can use SNAP benefits only for food, notwithstanding Rep. Steve King’s assertion that he knows food stamps are used for bail and tattoos.  Nearly 48 million Americans now receive food stamps (about 15% of the approximately 314 million Americans), at an annual cost to us of about $80 billion.

No matter what Congress decides, food stamps expenditures will be reduced in November, when a provision in the 2009 stimulus bill expires.  House Republicans, however, propose Continue reading

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We Support Brandworkers

Attending the 2013 Brandworkers Awards Dinner

On Wednesday October 16, several members of our firm attended the Annual Brandworkers’ Dinner held at the Angel Orensanz Foundation in NYC. Brandworkers was founded in 2007 by retail and food employees who identified a need for an organization dedicated to protecting and advancing their rights. The organization was launched based on a simple principle: that working people themselves, equipped with powerful social change tools, were uniquely positioned to make positive change on the job and in society.

By empowering retail and food employees with social change tools, Brandworkers’ Focus on the Food Chain and Legal Defense-Plus programs have recovered close to $1 million in unpaid wages and compensation for discrimination; improved working conditions for hundreds of workers; and have helped workers develop as powerful social change leaders.

We look forward to continuing our  support of their mission!

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