What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is a state-sponsored insurance program that provides compensation for workers suffering injury or illness. Pennsylvania workers’ compensation was mandated in the 1914 Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Act as a safety net for individuals who become injured or sick as a result of job-related duties or conditions. Workers’ compensation benefits exist to pay for medical expenses and lost wages when you suffer a work-related injury, become ill, or aggravate an existing injury or disease while on the job.
All PA employers are obligated by the Commonwealth to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. Most employees are covered by workers’ compensation regardless of their status as part-time or full-time and regardless of their immigration status. Whether you are a full-time, part-time, seasonal, or immigrant worker regardless of your immigration status who was injured or became sick while on the job, you have the right to collect workers comp.
If you are having issues with your workers’ compensation in Reading, our Reading workers’ compensation lawyers at Munley Law are here to help. We know the law and we will fight for your rights after a workplace injury. Call us for a free case evaluation today. Se habla Espanol.
What Benefits Can I Receive Under Workers’ Compensation?
There are two primary benefits under PA law:
- Medical benefits. These are the benefits you are entitled to which cover your medical treatment expenses, medical treatment for work-related injuries or disease, prescription medicines, medical appliances such as braces and walkers, and anything else covered under PA medical benefits
- Wage loss benefits. These are the benefits an injured worker receives to compensate them for time lost due to injury and future payments for predicted wage loss during their recovery
Are All Employees Covered By Workers’ Compensation?
Yes. All workers under Pennsylvania state law are covered under workers’ compensation insurance regardless of their immigration status or status as full-time or part-time workers.
Can I Collect Workers’ Comp If I Work For a Temp Agency?
Yes. But filing and receiving your workman’s comp insurance for temporary or seasonal work can be more complicated than the process for a full-time, regular worker.
In Reading, seasonal workers often start jobs in retail, warehouse, manufacturing, and shipping just for a busy season or holiday. If you have been injured on your seasonal job in Reading, find an experienced worker’s compensation attorney to help you file your claim.
Your employer and the temp agency might try to shift responsibility from one to the other. Be sure you have an experienced PA workers’ comp lawyer on your side.
How Do I File a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
Report your injury or illness to your employer
Report all injuries to your employer as soon as possible. You are required to provide notice within 21 days of the date of the injury but don’t put it off. Always provide notice in writing and include the date, time and place the incident occurred. If you provided verbal notice, follow up with written notice ie via email.
In the case of an injury or illness caused over time, the employee must report the injury or illness according to these timeframes after receiving an official diagnosis from a licensed medical provider.
Once notified, the employer will provide you with the required paperwork for you to complete
Once you report your injury or illness, your employer will provide you with your claim form which is to be filled out and returned to them. This form will request all of the details of the injury or illness. They should also provide a “report of injury” form which will be submitted to PA’s Workers Compensation Board.
Next, the employer reports the injury to Pennsylvania and files your claim with their workers’ comp insurance company
Your employer will send the claim form to your worker’s comp insurance carrier and your doctor will submit an additional medical report.
The insurer approves or denies the claim
Once your claim is filed, it will be in the hands of your employer’s workers comp insurance company to approve or deny your benefits.
What If My Worker’s Compensation Claim is Denied?
The workers’ compensation insurance company may initially deny your claim. You are entitled to file an appeal. If your workers’ compensation claim in Reading was denied, a workers’ compensation lawyer at Munley Law will help you receive the benefits you are entitled to.
Your initial consultation is free and we collect no fee until you receive your benefits. Call our Reading office today or fill out our online form and an experienced Reading workers comp lawyer will be in contact with you soon. Se habla Espanol. You can call us 24 hours a day.
Does Workers’ Comp Cover Only My Medical Bills?
The Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Act mandates three primary types of benefits:
Medical coverage includes any medical bills related to your injury or illness. These claims are not limited to a specific dollar amount and should cover all co-pays and deductibles. Medical benefits include doctor visits, medical tests, ER visits, prescriptions, medical equipment (such as wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, and braces) and physical therapy, and other medical treatment deemed necessary by your treating medical provider.
If you are unable to work after an accident, you will receive a percentage of your wages, known as disability benefits. There are temporary benefits as well as permanent benefits, depending on how long your occupational injury or disease prevents you from returning to work.
“Specific loss” payments
If your work injury resulted in permanent scarring or disfigurement, the loss of a limb, or impaired use of a body part, you may be eligible for “specific loss” payments.
Unlike regular workers’ compensation, you do not need to miss work for “specific loss” compensation. You may collect specific loss payments even if your injury does not stop you from working.
You must be able to show that your injury happened during the course of your job duties.
Your experienced Reading workers comp attorney can answer any questions you have about specific loss or any other benefits.
Do Workers’ Compensation Cases End in a Settlement?
The majority of worker’s compensation claims are resolved with a settlement between the injured worker and the insurance company that is beneficial to both parties.
Settlement is a compromise and usually means you can have more money faster and at a lower risk. If for any reason, the parties involved cannot agree on a settlement, a workers’ compensation case can be sent to a judge for a ruling.
If your workers’ comp case goes to court, make sure you have the most experienced workers comp lawyer by your side to ensure you receive the maximum benefits you are entitled to.
The Reading worker’s compensation lawyers at Munley Law have been representing the hardworking people of PA for more than 60 years. We have the experience as trial lawyers if your worker’s comp case does go to court, and we have the negotiating power to ensure you receive a fair settlement. Contact us today for a free consultation.
How Much Does PA Workers’ Compensation Pay?
Workers compensation pays for medical bills and wage loss according to separate standards together which make up your total worker’s compensation package.
Wage loss benefits
Compensation for lost wages is based on your average weekly pay rate, regardless of your status as full- or part-time.
As of now, the PA weekly compensation rate for lost wage benefits amounts to 66 percent of your weekly wage if you earned between $810.76 and $1,621.50 prior to your injury or illness leading to your inability to perform your job duties.
For workers who earn between $600.56 and $810.75, the weekly compensation rate is $540.50.
For Pennsylvania workers who earned $600.55 or less weekly before the injury or illness, the weekly rate is 90% of the employee’s average weekly wage.
Your workers’ compensation benefits can vary based on a variety of factors. Ask your workers comp lawyer at Munley Law if you have questions about how much your claim is worth.
- Some of the factors that determine the number of your benefits are:
- How much your medical expenses amounted to
- How severe is your injury or disease is
- How does your injury or illness impact your current and future earning capacity
There are four ways to classify worker’s injuries in Pennsylvania:
- Temporary Total Disability: If you are designated as Temporary Total Disability (TTD), it is anticipated that you will eventually be able to return to work.
- For up to 90 days, TTD enables you to get workers’ compensation benefits for missed wages.
- Permanent Total Disability: You may be categorized as totally and permanently incapacitated if your disease or injury is so severe that it prevents you from returning to work. Your employer’s insurance provider has the right to request an independent medical examination (IME) after 104 weeks to reassess your condition. Your status could be altered to partial disability if the IME determines that you are less than 35 percent disabled. Your benefits amount could vary as a result of this modification.
- Permanent Partial Disability: You can receive benefits for up to 500 weeks. However, you have the option to apply for total disability status if an IME finds that your impairment is at least 35 percent throughout that time.
- Specific loss benefits: You are eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits if a workplace injury results in serious disfigurement or the loss of a limb or other bodily part. Specific loss benefits often result in a one-time payment.If you have lost a loved one to a workplace injury or disease, you may be eligible to receive:
- Death Benefits: If the injury or disease results in death, surviving dependents may be entitled to receive benefits.
The total amount of your benefits can also depend on which body part or parts are affected by your occupational injury and how severe your impairment is.
If you or a loved one has been injured or has become sick as a result of job-related duties or if a loved one has died as a result of workplace injuries or disease, call a workers’ compensation lawyer at Munley Law today. We will fight hard to help you receive the benefits you deserve.
How Much Will a Workers’ Comp Attorney Cost?
A workplace injury or illness can be life-changing.
Munley Law has more than six decades of fighting for the hard-working people of Pennsylvania. Let us help you put your life back together.
Your consultation with a workplace attorney is free and we charge you nothing until we win.
Call us today or fill out our online form for your free case evaluation.