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    Can You Be Disqualified from Receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Pennsylvania?

    Through the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, employers are generally required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to compensate employees who are injured on the job. These benefits are available for most work-related injuries and illnesses that happen while on the job or performing job-related duties. 

    If an employer fails to carry the workers’ compensation insurance required by law, employees who are injured can file lawsuits against them, and the employer can face not only state fines but also criminal prosecution. 

    While most injuries and illnesses that occur at work are covered, there are ways that you can be disqualified. A local PA workers’ compensation attorney from Vanasse Law, LLC is available to review your unique situation and negotiate the best outcome on your behalf with your employer or their insurance company. 

    Reasons for Disqualification from Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Pennsylvania 

    Injuries that qualify will ensure that you receive coverage for your medical costs linked to your on-the-job injury, as well as lost wages. However, reasons you may be disqualified and unable to collect benefits include the following. 

    Intentionally Causing Your Injury 

    Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, which means that you are able to collect without having to prove that your employer was at fault or even that you did not contribute to your injury. However, if you intentionally caused the injury and your employer can prove this, you’ll be disqualified from receiving any coverage or benefits. 

    Intentional Intoxication While Working 

    Employees whose injuries were caused due to the use of illegal drugs and/or alcohol, or the intentional improper use of prescribed pharmaceutical drugs, will be disqualified from workers’ compensation benefits. However, please note that your employer has the burden of proving that your workplace injury was caused by such intentional intoxication. 

    Failure to Report Your Injury Sufficiently or Timely 

    Generally, employees must notify an employer of a work injury within 120 days by providing the required information and seeking the necessary medical attention; otherwise, the claim can be barred. To ensure timely reporting, employees are recommended to report their injuries within 21 days. 

    Alleging the Injury Happened Outside of Work or Challenging Your Status as an Employee 

    To escape liability, employers or insurance companies have been known to claim that an employee’s injuries happened outside of work or that the employee was an independent contractor who was not protected by workers’ compensation. These defenses are complex, and our workers’ compensation attorney can help advocate for your best interests. 

    Connect with a Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Lawyer to Protect Your Benefits 

    To learn how the dedicated workers’ compensation lawyers from Vanasse Law, LLC can help you overcome any challenges to your benefits that could disqualify you, visit our site to schedule your free initial consultation.