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This entry was published on 2016-04-08
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Civil enforcement
Workers' Compensation (WKC) CHAPTER 67, ARTICLE 8
§ 141-a. Civil enforcement. 1. To investigate violations of sections
fifty-two, one hundred thirty-one and two hundred thirteen of this
chapter, the chair or his or her designees shall have the power to:

(a) Enter and inspect any place of business at any reasonable time for
the purpose of investigating employer compliance.

(b) Examine and copy business records.

(c) Administer oaths and affirmations.

(d) Issue and serve subpoenas for attendance of witnesses or
production of business records, books, papers, correspondence,
memoranda, and other records. Such subpoenas may be served without the
state on any defendant over whom a New York court would have personal
jurisdiction under the civil practice law and rules as to the subject
matter under investigation, provided the information or testimony sought
bears a reasonable relationship to the subject matter under

2. The chair shall specify by rule the business records that employers
must maintain and produce to comply with this section.

3. If a person has refused to obey a subpoena, the chair may commence
an action in supreme court of any county where venue is proper for an
order requiring compliance with the subpoena. Costs, including
reasonable attorney's fees, incurred by the chair to obtain and enforce
an order granting, in whole or in part, a petition to enforce a subpoena
shall be taxed against the subpoenaed party.

4. (a) Whenever the chair determines that an employer who is required
to secure compensation in accordance with this chapter has failed to
secure such compensation, or where an employer has failed to pay
penalties assessed against it pursuant to this chapter, or failed to pay
a judgment under section twenty-six of this chapter within ninety days
after notice to the employer and has not moved to modify or vacate such
judgment, such failure shall be deemed an immediate serious danger to
public health, safety, or welfare sufficient to justify service by the
chair of a stop-work order on the employer, requiring the cessation of
all business operations effective immediately, except where the
employer's failure concerns only domestic or child care workers in his
or her own household. The chair may issue such order, which shall take
effect as to a particular employer worksite when served at that
worksite, or as to all employer worksites in the state for which the
employer is not in compliance when served on the employer. A stop-work
order may be served with regard to an employer's worksite by posting a
copy of the stop-work order in a conspicuous location at the worksite.
The order shall remain in effect until the chair directs that the
stop-work order be removed, upon a determination that the employer has
come into compliance with the coverage requirements of this chapter and
has paid any penalty assessed under this chapter. If the employer shall
within thirty days after notice of the stop-work order make an
application in affidavit form for a redetermination review of such order
the chair shall make a decision in writing on the issues raised in such
application. The chair may direct a conditional release from a stop-work
order upon a finding that the employer has complied with coverage
requirements of this chapter and has agreed to remit periodic payments
of the penalty pursuant to a payment agreement schedule with the chair.
If an agreement or order of conditional release is issued, failure by
the employer to meet any term or condition of such payment agreement
shall result in the immediate reinstatement of the stop-work order and
the entire unpaid balance of the penalty shall become immediately due.
The chair may require an employer who is found to have failed to comply
with the coverage requirements of this chapter to file with the board,
as a condition of release from a stop-work order, periodic reports for a
probationary period that shall not exceed two years, and that
demonstrate the employer's continued compliance with this chapter. The
board shall by rule specify the reports required and the time for filing
under this subdivision.

(b) A stop-work order issued against an employer under this section
shall be in effect against any non-compliant substantially-owned
affiliated entity.

5. The chair may file a complaint in the supreme court of any county
where venue is proper: (a) to enjoin any employer from violating a
stop-work order; or (b) to enjoin any other practice prohibited by
section fifty-two or one hundred thirty-one of this chapter. In any
action brought by the chair pursuant to this section in which it
prevails, the court may award costs, including the reasonable costs of
investigation and reasonable attorneys' fees.

6. Any judgment obtained by the chair and any penalty due under this
section shall, until collected, constitute a lien upon the entire
interest of the employer, legal or equitable, in any property, real or
personal, tangible or intangible; however, such lien is subordinate to
claims for unpaid wages and any prior recorded liens, and a lien created
by this section is not valid against any person who, subsequent to such
lien and in good faith and for value, purchases real or personal
property from such employer or becomes the mortgagee on real or personal
property of such employer, or against a subsequent attaching creditor,
unless, with respect to real estate of the employer, a notice of the
lien is recorded in the public records of the county where the real
estate is located, and with respect to personal property of the
employer, the notice is recorded with the secretary of state.

7. In any court proceedings under this section, the chair shall be
represented by the attorney general.