As a former construction worker, Union Carpenter (and current member), and Certified Workers’ Compensation Attorney, Levinson Axelrod, P.A. Partner Rich Marcolus has spent decades advocating for workers and families who find themselves facing difficult times following job-related injuries.
That includes the first responders who keep our communities and loved ones safe in the most pressing times, and all types of workers who benefit from sensible legislation and sound policies that protect the rights of real people, not the profits and pocket books of corporations.
Rich’s most recent legislative efforts came when he was asked to testify before the State Senate Committee in support of the “Thomas P. Canzanella Twenty First Century First Responders Protection Act” (Assembly, No. 1741).
The Canzanella Bill is a broadly backed measure that protects the rights of first responders diagnosed with cancer. If enacted into law, the bill would create a presumption that any first responders diagnosed with certain enumerated types of cancer would be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits from the state.
The bill protects our firefighters, EMTs, and police officers who help protect us every day – and who are regularly exposed to carcinogens and related health hazards during the course of their work.
A Commitment to Workers’ Compensation Causes
In addition to helping public and non-government workers seek compensation when injuries and illnesses hinder their ability to work and earn income, Rich has dedicated a considerable portion of his career to supporting workers’ rights, raising awareness, and backing legislative efforts which protect hard-working people from powerful insurance companies that value profits more than people.
Rich’s work includes helping draft New Jersey’s Voluntary Tender Bill (Senate No. 2145), which was signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy in 2018. The bill amended the New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Act to help injured workers obtain legal counsel without the interference of insurance companies. Rich has also testified before the Senate and Assembly Labor Committees in support of the Hand and Foot Bill (S-782), a measure which calls for increased workers’ comp benefits for injured workers who suffer catastrophic hand and foot injuries and would require a study to evaluate the state’s workers’ comp system.
Rich remains committed to drafting and supporting laws that bolster workers’ rights and bring much-needed changes to New Jersey’s workers’ compensation system. In addition to the Canzanella Bill, he has also worked on the Special Adjustment Bill, the Collection Practices Bill, and other legislative efforts.