Workplace Accidents can have a long-lasting impact on your life.
They can happen in any workplace. From slip and falls to injuries from machinery, they types of accidents that can happen at work everyday are endless.
So what happens when you are injured? Who will pay for your medical bills and cover any loss of wages due to time off work? How you can make a workers’ compensation claim and what are you entitled to after a work accident.
What is Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation?
The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act (WCA) is a piece of legislation designed to ensure that when employees are injured at work, they have financial assistance.
Most employers in Pennsylvania are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance must cover all employees, whether full time, part-time, or seasonal. Federal employees are usually not covered by the WCA as they have their own insurance schemes.
How do I Make a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
If you need to make a claim through worker’s compensation insurance, there is a procedure to follow that expedites the process.
Should I Seek Medical Attention?
Whether you suffered minor or substantial injuries, you must seek medical attention as soon as possible. Remember to keep a detailed record of all medical treatments and costs.
In the first 90 days, you may be asked to see a doctor who has been pre-approved by your employer or their insurers. After those 90 days, you can see your own doctor.
When should I Inform My Employer?
Notify your employer as soon as possible that you intend to claim workers’ compensation. Your employer is responsible for filing a workers’ comp claim on your behalf.
You must inform your employer within 21 days if you wish to be eligible for benefits from the date of the injury. You must inform them within 120 days to maintain eligibility to make a claim.
Your employer’s insurance provider has 21 days from the date of the notification to respond to your claim.
Should I Contact a Workers’ Compensation Attorney?
An experienced Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyer can help you to navigate the complexities of bringing a compensation suit to court and ensure that all documentation and files have been completed. A lawyer will fight for your rights and advise you on what you are entitled to.
What are My Entitlements?
Pennsylvania’s WCA discloses certain benefits you are entitled to in the event of sustaining a workplace injury. In most cases, claiming your worker’s comp benefits prohibits you from making any separate claim against your employer or co-workers. If you are unsure which avenue you wish to pursue, speak to an experienced Philadelphia workers compensation attorney. Your benefits should include:
An average weekly wage which is ⅔ of the full wage you received before the injury. Wage caps apply to higher-paid workers, and some workers can receive up to 90% of their previous wages.
- Medical expenses related to the injury, including all treatment, surgeries, medications, equipment, and the costs of any tests needed.
- Partial disability compensation for a maximum of 500 weeks if you are unable to work at former capacity or level before your accident.
- Total disability compensation if you are unable to return to work.
- Compensation for permanent injury or disfigurement where you have, for example, lost a limb.
- Death benefits. If the injured party dies from their injuries, either at the time of the accident or within 300 weeks of it happening, then the spouse and any minor dependents may receive death benefits.
Why Should I Hire a Lawyer for my Claim?
While the WCA may seem like an ideal way to ensure an injured worker is not out of pocket, things do not always go smoothly. Insurance companies can often delay, dispute, or even deny benefits.
An experienced Philadelphia workers’ comp lawyer from The Law Offices of Joel J. Kofsky can help you navigate the complicated process of appeals and claims. Best of all, you never have to pay us unless we win your case. Call our law firm at (215) 735-4800 to schedule your no-obligation consultation.