PA Workers’ Compensation FAQs
Most employers in Pennsylvania are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to cover the workplace injuries of their employees. Obtaining these benefits, however, is not always easy, making it especially important for those who have been hurt on the job, to reach out to an experienced Pennsylvania workers’ compensation lawyer for help.
What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system that requires employers to obtain insurance coverage that provides medical and wage loss benefits to employees who are hurt in workplace accidents. Claimants don’t have to prove that their injury was the result of negligence, only that it occurred at work, in order to collect these benefits. In exchange, employees are barred from bringing workplace accident-related civil suits against their employers.
What Benefits Am I Entitled To?
In Pennsylvania, most employees who are hurt on the job are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, such as medical benefits, which cover the cost of surgical and medical services, supplies, hospital treatment, medicine, and rehabilitation. Workers’ comp also covers wage loss, so injured employees can expect to receive around two-thirds of their regular weekly wage while they recuperate. If they are able to perform part-time or light-duty work, however, this amount will be reduced to two-thirds of the difference between their past and reduced weekly wages.
An injured employee may also be entitled to specific loss benefits if he or she suffers from:
- The permanent loss of the use of a limb, foot, hand, or digit;
- The permanent loss of his or her sight or hearing; or
- A serious and permanent disfigurement on the head, face, or neck.
If a work injury is so severe that it results in an employee’s death, then his or her surviving relatives could also be entitled to death benefits.
How Long do I Have to be Disabled to Qualify for Benefits?
Injured employees automatically qualify for medical benefits, regardless of the severity of their injury. To be eligible for wage loss benefits, however, an injured employee must be unable to work for at least seven days. Furthermore, those who are disabled by an injury for between one and two weeks will have to undergo a seven day waiting period before they receive benefits. This waiting period is not required for disabilities that exceed 14 days.
How Do I File a Workers’ Comp Claim Petition?
Once suffering an on-the-job injury, employees must notify their employer of the accident within 21 days, although the sooner it is reported, the more likely the employer will be to approve the claim. After notice has been given, the employer has three weeks to deny or approve the request. If approved, the claimant should immediately begin receiving benefits. If denied, however, the injured worker will need to file a workers’ compensation Claim Petition with a Workers’ Compensation Judge as soon as possible.
Call Today to Set Up a Free Consultation
For help pursuing your own workers’ comp claim, please reach out to dedicated Wilkes Barre workers’ compensation lawyer Keith Figured by calling the Figured Law Firm at 570-954-9299 today.