Each state has its own workers’ compensation laws. In Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act (the Act) affords injured employees various rights, including the right to compensation for work-related injuries and illnesses. Injured workers must meet various legal requirements and deadlines to sustain the viability of their claims. The Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. are here to help injured workers and their families get the compensation they deserve.
Workers’ Comp Employer Obligations
Under the Act, Pennsylvania employers have a duty to provide employees with safe and healthful workplaces, free from known dangers likely to cause serious physical harm or death. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets forth various safety standards for the general industry as well as specific industries including agriculture, construction, healthcare, and maritime.
Sometimes, employer negligence causes an employee to become injured, such as when they fail to comply with the applicable OSHA standards. However, employees may still suffer injuries despite their employer’s best efforts to maintain safe working conditions. Although employers may be cited and fined by OSHA, they may not be personally sued by their employees for injuries sustained at work. Rather, injured employees must avail themselves of their exclusive remedy – workers’ compensation.
Employers with more than one employee in Pennsylvania are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, either funded by the employers themselves or paid for through state-run insurance programs or private insurance companies. If a worker becomes injured on the job or develops an occupational illness, he or she may file a workers’ compensation claim to recover benefits such as payment for medical expenses and lost wages.
Workers’ Compensation Eligibility
Nearly all workers in the state are eligible for compensation, except for certain agricultural workers, casual employees, domestic workers, longshoremen, shipyard and harbor workers, railroad, and certain other federal workers. Although these individuals are not covered by state workers’ compensation, they may be eligible for compensation under federal legislation such as the Longshoremen and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA).
If I Hurt Myself at Work Do I Still Get Paid?
The workers’ compensation system is no-fault; therefore, regardless of who caused the accident, workers are entitled to compensation. Generally, injured workers may receive compensation even if they break a safety rule at work. However, workers’ compensation insurance companies may deny claims if the employee engaged in:
- Illegal drug/alcohol use at work
- Intentional self-infliction of injuries
- Willful misconduct
How Long Do You Have to Report an Injury at Work?
Pennsylvania workers have 120 days from the date of their injury to report an injury at work to their employers. It is important to comply with this requirement, as claims filed after the deadline may be denied.
Philadelphia Workers’ Comp Lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Help Workers Obtain Benefits for Their Injuries
If you were injured at work, you may be entitled to various workers’ compensation benefits, including compensation for all your reasonable and necessary medical expenses and wage loss benefits, depending on the type and severity of disability. Contact a Philadelphia workers’ comp lawyer at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. for assistance with your claim. Complete our online contact form or call us at 888-PITT-LAW today to schedule a free consultation.
From our offices in Philadelphia, Lansdowne, Bensalem and Reading, we represent clients throughout the state of Pennsylvania, including those in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, and Philadelphia County, as well as in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester and Wynnewood.