COVID-19 Scenarios and Potential Benefits
There are a number of scenarios in which a Pennsylvania employee might find him or herself if exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace. While much of how the state will handle these types of claims is still unclear, there are a few scenarios that employees can keep in mind during this time. We’ve included a few below, but if you have more questions about COVID-19 and workers’ comp benefits, please reach out to our experienced Wilkes Barre COVID-19 claims attorney today.
Employees are Quarantined But Business Remains Open
If you find yourself quarantined, but are still working, you could have a few different options if you contract COVID-19, including:
- Requesting paid leave through your employer if available;
- Checking your eligibility for leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA);
- Seeking more information about expanded unemployment compensation programs; and
- Initiating a workers’ compensation claim.
For help determining which, if any, of these options is best for you and your family, please call an experienced workers’ comp attorney.
An Employer Closes or Suspends Operations
If your employer has already suspended operations or closed its doors permanently, your options may be more limited. For instance, it is unlikely that employees who find themselves in this situation will qualify for paid leave through their employer, nor will they be eligible for paid leave under the FFCRA. Similarly, affected employees won’t have access to workers’ compensation. However, these options could change if an employer re-opens its doors under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, making it especially important for employees who find themselves in this situation, to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible.
An Employee is Caring for a Sick Family Member
The good news is that if you are unable to work because you’re caring for a sick family member, you will qualify for employer-provided paid leave, as well as paid leave under the FFCRA, and expanded unemployment compensation, although workers’ comp benefits will probably not be available to you.
An Employee Must Stay Home to Provide Childcare
If your employer is still open, but you must stay home to care for a child due to school or daycare closures, you will qualify for paid leave under the FFCRA, as well as unemployment compensation. Workers’ comp benefits, however, will not be available to you.
A Healthcare Worker or First Responder Contracts COVID-19 at Work
Currently, Pennsylvania law only officially guarantees that certain employees will have access to workers’ compensation coverage after contracting COVID-19, including healthcare workers and first responders. Those who fill these roles and who contract COVID-19 while at work will qualify for workers’ compensation and potentially employer-sponsored paid leave.
Call Our Office to Schedule an Initial Case Review Today
If you have questions about your own eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic, please call 570-954-9299 to speak with experienced Wilkes Barre work injury lawyer Keith Figured at the Figured Law Firm today.