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Mike recovers maximum dollars on behalf of his clients.  His track record and personalized comprehensive approach means that he achieves the highest possible benefits for injured workers. He is one of only a few certified specialists in Worker’s Compensation Law, and he uses his knowledge to get the best case values for his clients.

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    Archive for the ‘Workers’ Compensation’ Category

    5 Reasons to Call A Workers Comp Lawyer. You Deserve Compensation for Your Injuries

    Workers’ compensation is a benefits program that is there for workers in the state of Pennsylvania. It provides medical expenses and wage-loss compensation for those who are unable to work until they are able to go back. It also provides death benefits to the dependent survivors of those who suffer work-related deaths. Though almost every worker in the state is covered by the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, that does not mean that getting the benefits that you deserve is a straightforward process. Employers and the insurance companies that provide workers’ compensation coverage have 21 days after receiving notice of an injury to either agree that it is work-related and issue a Notice of Compensation or Notice of Temporary Compensation or to deny your claim. Once a claim is denied you have the right to file an appeal, but this process can be complicated and intimidating. If you have been injured or sickened on the job and are considering filing a workers’ compensation claim, you greatly improve your chances of success by calling a workers’ compensation lawyer. When you deserve compensation for your injuries, the attorneys at the Lancaster law firm of Vanasse Law will fight for your rights.

    Though many people attempt to handle their workers’ comp claim and appeal on their own, doing so can be a mistake. The process can be confusing and requires adherence to highly specific deadlines and the gathering and submission of evidence. There are a number of reasons to call a workers’ compensation lawyer to assist you in your claim:

    • A workers’ compensation attorney will make sure that you are aware of all of the deadlines that you are required to meet, including when you need to provide notice of an injury, and how long you are required to receive care from the company-approved physician before being able to choose your own.
    • A workers’ compensation attorney will be able to advise you of whether you are able to hold other parties responsible for your injury. Though you can not generally file a lawsuit against your employer, there are many instances in which third parties may be found liable for your injuries. A workers’ comp lawyer will investigate this possibility and advise you of your rights.
    • A workers’ compensation attorney will be able to provide you with valuable information about other benefits you may be eligible to receive, including Social Security, unemployment or disability, and to help you to coordinate these benefits so that you are within the law.
    • A workers’ compensation attorney will represent you if your employer attempts to terminate, modify or suspend your benefits.
    • A workers’ compensation attorney will stand up to the insurance company’s lawyers during the appeals process.

    At Vanasse Law, we are passionate advocates for the rights of injured workers. If you have been hurt on the job, call us today to ensure that you get the compensation and benefits that you deserve.

    Learn more about Workers’ Compensation HERE.

    What to Expect When You Sue Your Employer for Workers’ Compensation

    Workers’ compensation is a special type of benefit that provides compensation for medical expenses as well as lost wages suffered due to an illness or injury that occurs at work. This is considered a “no-fault” benefit, which means that because it is offered, injured workers are not permitted to file a lawsuit against their employer – or even their coworkers – for negligence. However, the inability to sue an employer for workers’ compensation does not mean that no personal injury lawsuit can be filed, or that an employer can simply deny a worker’s claim and avoid having to provide compensation. When a workers’ compensation claim is denied, a workers’ compensation attorney can assist you in filing a claim petition in which you can appeal the initial decision. Additionally, there are many instances where a third party such as an equipment manufacturer may be in some way liable for your injury, and workers’ compensation does not preclude filing lawsuits against them. If you would like to know what to expect when you pursue your employer for workers’ compensation benefits after they have rejected your initial claim, the attorneys at the Lancaster law firm of Vanasse Law can help.

    There is a very clearly prescribed process to filing a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation claim. An employer or their insurer has just 21 days to issue a denial of a claim that has been submitted to them, and after that, the employee has three years from the time that the injury occurred or illness was diagnosed to file a claim petition. Once a petition has been filed the case is assigned to a workers’ compensation judge and a hearing is scheduled. At this hearing, the judge will listen to all of the evidence that you provide in support of your claim, as well as the evidence for why your employer has denied you benefits. At this point, the judge may refer the case for mediation or settlement. They may also simply hand down a written decision. Once the judge has made their decision, both the employee and the employer or their insurer have the right to file an appeal within twenty days to the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board asking for reconsideration, and following this, there are other appeals possibilities. Appeals can be made to the Commonwealth Court, or even to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

    The Workers’ Compensation process is designed to be accessible to anybody, but the way that the system works, an employee is at a big disadvantage if they do not have an experienced, competent workers’ compensation attorney representing them – especially because there is a certainty that the employer or their insurance company will have legal representation. In order to give yourself the best possible chance of successfully winning your workers’ compensation claim, call the Lancaster law firm of Vanasse Law today.

    Learn more about Workers’ Compensation HERE.

    Farm Worker Injury Compensation: Understanding Workers Compensation for Lancaster, PA Farm Workers

    Pennsylvania is one of America’s most prominent farming states. The state boasts over 63,000 farms and ranks fourth in the country for dairy production, apple production, and grape production, and first for mushrooms. Though farming may evoke an image of a bucolic and peaceful setting, the truth is that it is a very dangerous profession, and agricultural employees are at high risk for work-related injuries. Despite the dangers inherent in the industry, workers’ compensation laws throughout the country do not necessarily apply to those who work on farms, and for those who suffer farm work injuries in Pennsylvania, those protections might be in place, but only under limited circumstances. Understanding worker’s compensation for Lancaster, PA farm workers is complex, but the attorneys at Vanasse Law are dedicated to ensuring that those who are injured on the job get the justice they deserve. If you’ve suffered a farm work injury, call us today and let us tell you how we can help.

    Though Pennsylvania does allow farmworkers to collect workers’ compensation when they have suffered a farm work injury, that is only provided on a limited basis. According to the law, Pennsylvania farm employers are only required to provide workers’ compensation if they pay one agricultural worker wages of $1,200 or more, or furnish employment to one employee in agricultural labor for thirty or more days in a calendar year. Additionally, the state courts have ruled against the rights of undocumented workers to receive replacement wages when they have suffered a farm work injury, though they do provide for medical benefits.  Trying to understand whether your employer is required to provide these benefits can be a complex process, and that is why you need the help of an experienced Lancaster, PA workers’ compensation law firm.

    Farmworkers are at risk for a number of injuries. Accidents can occur when working with heavy machinery or you may be injured while working with power tools. Farm animals can be unpredictable and can expose you to airborne illnesses, chemicals and pesticides can lead to a variety of conditions and toxicities, and you can develop repetitive stress injuries or suffer injuries such as broken bones or back strains. In all of these cases, the medical bills will quickly become overwhelming and you may be required to miss work or be completely disabled.

    Though the exclusions and limitations established by the state with regards to providing workers’ compensation to farmworkers may seem to work against your ability to get the compensation you need following your work injury, the lack of workers’ compensation does not preclude your ability to file a third-party personal injury claim that can provide you with similar benefits or compensation.  The attorneys at the workers’ compensation law firm of Vanasse Law have extensive experience in determining the best way to approach each farm work injury situation in order to maximize your ability to get the compensation that you need. Call us today to see how we can help.

    Learn more about Workers’ Compensation and Vanasse Law HERE.

    Industrial Worker Injuries: How Workers Compensation Helps Protect Lancaster, PA Industrial Workers

    Lancaster, Pennsylvania has a vibrant economy supported by diverse industries, including agriculture, manufacturing tourism, and healthcare. The community boasts hundreds of manufacturers and distributors and produces goods as diverse as farm machinery and linoleum, ball bearings, and a wide range of food products. Though the jobs that these businesses represent make valuable contributions to the financial health of the area, they also put local residents at risk of a variety of industrial worker injuries that can be devastating to physical health. If you are a Lancaster, PA industrial worker who has been injured on the job, the workers’ compensation law firm of Vanasse Law is here to help.

    It is mandatory for employers in the state of Pennsylvania to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees, and this insurance can come from a state fund, a private carrier, or employers can opt to provide insurance on their own.  There are highly specific rules regarding both compensation and the process of applying for workers’ comp benefits, and it is essential that anybody who has suffered industrial worker injuries or who is sickened on the job follows these rules in order to maximize their ability to collect the benefits that they deserve.  Injured workers have only 21 days to report their injury to their employer, and the following receipt of the report the employer has only ten days to submit a First Report of Injury to the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.

    Though employees who are determined to be eligible for benefits are able to receive full medical benefits without limits, in order to be deemed eligible they must first see a physician that comes from their employer’s list of approved doctors, if such a list exists. Once the employers’ insurance company reviews a report of injury, they make a decision as to whether or not to pay the claim. If a claim is not denied within 21 days then the worker is supposed to receive a Notice of Temporary Compensation Payable Form or an Agreement of Compensation Form. Whichever you receive will need to be filled out and filed with the bureau along with a Statement of Wages Form. There is a tremendous amount of paperwork and investigation that often follows a workers’ compensation claim, even when the compensation is agreed to, and it is essential that all of this documentation is properly completed and filed in a timely way in order to ensure that compensation is received as quickly as possible.

    Even when everything is done correctly, the workers’ compensation process in the state of Pennsylvania can be extremely complex. Having an experienced attorney working on your behalf and representing you will give you the confidence and knowledge that your claim is being handled properly from start to finish. Call the Lancaster Pa law firm of Vanasse Law for help filing your initial claim, collecting all of the documentation you need to support your claim, filing an appeal, and representing you during hearings. We are here to help.

    Learn more about how Vanasse Law can Help Industrial Workers HERE.

    White Collar Workers Injuries: Common In-Office Injuries That Can Result in Workers’ Compensation

    When people think about workers’ compensation and the injuries that require applying for these benefits, they generally imagine work setting such as factory floors and construction sites. The truth is that serious work-related injuries can happen in every environment, including offices where white collar workers are employed. Whether an employee is a professional in a supervisory role or a clerical staff member, it is quite common for white collar worker injuries to occur, and as a result they may be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits. If you are an employee who has suffered a white collar worker injury and you need legal advice or representation, contact the Lancaster, PA law firm of Vanasse Law to learn more about your rights and how we can help.

    There are a number of ways that an employee can be injured in an office setting. From something as simple as a slip and fall at the office to the development of a repetitive stress injury such as thoracic outlet syndrome or carpal tunnel syndrome, any accidental injury, sickness, or death that is a result of something that happens in the scope of your employment may qualify you for workers’ compensation. In the state of Pennsylvania, having your claim approved means that you can receive medical benefits without limitation, as well as replacement of lost wages where appropriate.

    The most common office injuries that result in workers’ compensation claims are a result of slip and fall accidents. They may be the result of unsafe conditions, unattended spills, exposed cords, loose rugs, or cluttered areas. The presence of inclement weather often contributes to the hazards that are present: slippery stairways, icy parking lots, and water accumulation of floors are frequently the cause of injury. Additionally, many injuries are a result of poor workstation ergonomics that can lead to repetitive stress injuries, poor posture, and strains. Other problems that befall white-collar workers include indoor air-quality problems, the negative impact of too much noise, electrical hazards, insufficient lighting or lighting that is too harsh, and acts of violence in the workplace.

    If you work in an office environment and have suffered a workplace injury, it is important that you familiarize yourself with the proper procedures for reporting and responding to those injuries so that you can avail yourself of the workers’ compensation benefits to which you are entitled. Though many employees are hesitant about filing a claim, it is important to remember that workers’ compensation is a no-fault system – by seeking benefits you are not blaming your employer for your injury, and you are not holding them liable.

    The Lancaster, PA workers’ compensation law firm of Vanasse Law is familiar with all of the processes and procedures of filing a workers’ compensation claim and will guide you through them in order to make sure that you are able to avail yourself of the benefits you need. Call us today to set up a convenient time for a consultation.

    Learn more about Workers’ Compensation HERE.

    Workers Compensation 101 from a Lancaster “Injured at Work” Lawyer

    Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that provides needed payments to an injured worker to cover hospitalization, medical expenses, rehabilitation, and other expenses needed to help them recover from their injury, regardless of who is at fault. Workers’ compensation is supposed to provide benefits to both employer and employees: The employees receive the compensation that they need and the employer does not have to defend themselves against claims of negligence. Unfortunately, though the system was intended to allow workers to easily file claims and receive the compensation and lost wages that they need, it does not always work that way. Employers and their insurance companies often make the process needlessly difficult, challenging workers’ compensation claims and delaying or rejecting payments. This leaves workers who are already suffering from their injury facing an uphill battle to get the compensation that they deserve. The Lancaster injured at work lawyers at Vanasse Law are here to help.

    In the state of Pennsylvania, the law states that those who are injured or become sick as a result of their job are entitled to workers’ compensation, but in order to get the benefits that they need, they have to follow a certain process.  This includes properly and promptly reporting your injury to your supervisor and to personnel. The state allows benefits after being out of work for seven days as long as you’ve reported the injury within 21 days from the time that the injury occurs. One way or another, you need to provide your employer with the date of the injury, where the accident occurred, and how you were affected within 120 days of the accident or you might lose your right to receive compensation.

    Once you’ve reported your injury appropriately, you are responsible for providing comprehensive documentation. You need to seek medical attention from an approved physician, keeping records of all medical bills and related expenses and following all treatment that is prescribed to you. At Vanasse Law, we have found it extremely helpful if injured workers maintain a diary or journal of all treatment you receive, as well as of the specific ways that the injury that you have sustained has impacted your daily life.

    The injured at work lawyers at Vanasse Law can provide you with legal representation that will help you with every step of the complex Pennsylvania workers compensation process. We will help you file your initial claim if you haven’t already done so, assisting you in collecting and preparing all of the essential documentation needed to prove your case. If you have already filed a claim and it has been rejected, we can assist you in filing an appeal and representing you during administrative hearings. We will also review your case to help determine whether you are eligible to file a personal injury claim against any third parties that may have contributed to your injury. At Vanasse Law, we are here to help. Call us today to set up an appointment to discuss your case.

    Learn more from our “Injured at Work” Lawyer HERE.

    PA Workers Compensation 101 – Understanding Your Rights in Pennsylvania

    No matter what industry you work in or what type of work you do, when you’ve been hurt on the job you have a lot of challenges in store. We know that your primary goal is to get better, but that’s going to take medical attention and time. Getting the compensation that you need to cover your injuries and your time away from work shouldn’t be a chore, but it often is. In the state of Pennsylvania, the process can be extremely complex and time-consuming, especially if you attempt to go it alone. Having an experienced Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation law firm by your side to represent you can greatly increase your chances of having your claim approved. At Vanasse Law, we have extensive knowledge of Pennsylvania’s Workers’ Compensation process. We know what needs to be done and will help you at every step along the way.

    It can be hard to know what to do after you’ve been hurt at work. The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation system can be overwhelming and it’s easy to miss an important step or deadline. That’s why it’s so important to have an experienced attorney to guide you through the process.  The first thing that you need to do is to report your accident and any resulting injury to your employer. You must do this within 120 days of knowing that your condition is work-related – if you miss this deadline, your employer is not required to provide you with these essential benefits. After this, you are required to see one of your employer’s approved workers’ compensation doctors for the first 90 days of your injury. If your employer has a list of these physicians posted and you fail to use one of them, your employer is able to deny paying medical bills incurred during those first ninety days.

    Once you have reported your injury, your employer needs to file a “First Report of Occupational Injury” with their insurance company as well as the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. Upon receipt of this form, the insurance company has 21 days in which to review the claim and accept it or deny it. Your employer also needs to accept or deny responsibility for your injury. Denial will result in you receiving a Notice of Compensation Denial, while acceptance results in a Notice of Compensation Payable. If you are denied you will need to file a claim petition within three years of the day of your injury. This will lead to a hearing in front of a judge to determine whether you are entitled to benefits or not.

    As you can see, the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation process is highly specific and complicated, but the experienced workers’ compensation attorneys at Vanasse Law have been working with the system for many years and can anticipate and address all of the potential outcomes. Call us today to set up an appointment to discuss your situation and see how we can help.

    Learn more about PA Workers Compensation HERE.

    What Is the Purpose of OSHA? Protecting Workers in Lancaster, PA

    As an employee, you have likely seen OSHA posters around your workplace, or perhaps you’ve heard coworkers or employee handbooks talk about OSHA regulations, but do you really know what OSHA is, what it does, or what its purpose is?  OSHA stands for the Occupational Safety and Health Act, which has been federal law since it was passed into law in 1970 under the administration of President Richard M. Nixon. The law’s purpose is to make sure that employers provide their employees with a work environment that is safe. It does this by providing specific guidelines and regulations for what compliance means.

    In the state of Pennsylvania, job sites are required to follow federal OSHA regulations because the state does not have its own workplace safety and health standards. The OSHA regulations protect employees at every level, from owners and officers to hourly workers. It also protects the family members of the owners. If you are an employee, OSHA’s protections mean that your employer is required to keep your Jobsite free of hazards, as well as to keep you safe in locations where you are required to go for your job as well.  Despite the intentions of the law, violations of OSHA laws occur frequently. If you have suffered a workplace injury involving an OSHA regulation, the attorneys at Vanasse Law can help. Contact us today to see how the existence of an OSHA violation can provide you with leverage as you seek compensation for your injuries.

    Despite the fact that OSHA standards are well-publicized and have been in place for years, violations and failures to maintain appropriate levels of protection occur frequently. Certain violations are more commonly seen than others, and failure to adhere to these standards can lead to serious injuries of employees in the workplace. The ten OSHA standards that employers most frequently fail to meet are:

    • Fall protection
    • Hazard communication
    • Scaffolding
    • Respiratory protection
    • Powered industrial trucks
    • Lockout/Tagout
    • Ladders
    • Electrical wiring
    • Machine guarding
    • Electrical systems design

    Failure to make sure that these standards are maintained invites preventable injuries and illnesses. Though Workers’ Compensation benefits are not dependent upon negligence, exceptions are sometimes made when an OSHA violation was present, allowing an injured worker to file for additional damages under a third-party claim. When it can be proven that an employer was aware of an OSHA violation and willfully chose not to address it, then those injured as a result of the violation may be able to sue for pain and suffering, and even for punitive damages.

    Employers are able to mount aggressive defenses of their lack of action to address OSHA compliance issues, so it is important that if you are filing a claim in conjunction with an OSHA violation, you have an attorney that has extensive familiarity with OSHA and Workers’ Compensation laws in Lancaster. The law firm of Vanasse Law is dedicated exclusively to helping those who are injured or made ill in workplace accidents. Call us today for more information on how we can help.

    Learn more about OSHA HERE.

    How a Lawyer Can Help You Receive the Workers’ Compensation Medical Benefits You Deserve

    Nobody goes to work anticipating being injured on the job, but accidents in the workplace are an unfortunate fact of life, no matter what industry you work in.  If you have been injured in a work place accident or have been diagnosed with an illness that was caused by your job, then your employer and/or their workers’ compensation insurance company is obligated to provide you with compensation for your loss of earnings and payment of your work-related medical expenses.  If your insurance company is refusing to pay for your work-related medical expenses you should consult with an experienced, certified workers’ compensation attorney from Vanasse Law in Lancaster County, PA.

    The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act provides that an employer/insurance company is responsible for payment of work-related medical expenses, as long as those expenses are deemed reasonable and necessary for treatment of the work-related injury.  Your employer/insurance company can be responsible for payment of the medical expenses even if you do not experience a loss of earnings as a result of your work-related injury.

    Additionally, your employer/insurance company cannot unilaterally stop paying medical benefits on your behalf once a claim has been accepted.  An employer/insurance company can only stop payment of the medical expenses if you have agreed to settle your claim, a Workers’ Compensation Judge orders that they are no longer responsible or they have successfully filed a Utilization Review (UR), which determines that the treatment is no longer reasonable and necessary.  If you have an accepted claim and the employer/insurance company have been paying for your medical benefits but have now stopped then you should immediately consult with a certified workers’ compensation attorney from Vanasse Law to make sure that your rights are being protected.  If the insurance company wants to settle your workers’ compensation claim, is litigating to try and stop the claim has filed Utilization Reviews which have stopped the payment of medical expenses then you should consult with a certified workers’ compensation attorney from Vanasse Law as soon as possible to make sure that your rights are fully and completely protected.

    Learn more about Workers’ Compensation Medical Benefits HERE.

    Michael Vanasse Earns Workers’ Compensation Law Specialty Certification

    Michael A. Vanasse of Vanasse Law, LLC of Lancaster has been certified as a specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law by the Pennsylvania Bar Association Workers’ Compensation Law Section.

    Mike successfully completed the 2015 certification process by submitting a variety of documents showing that at least 50 percent of his legal practice is in the specialty field of workers’ compensation, that he has practiced in the field for more than five years, and that he actively participates in Mandatory Continuing Legal Education in workers’ compensation law and related fields. Mike also passed the certification examination that focuses on workers’ compensation law and rules and leading case law.

    In 2012, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court approved the PBA Workers’ Compensation Law Section as the first bar association entity in Pennsylvania to certify lawyers in the area of workers’ compensation law. Certification was granted to 149 lawyers who took the exam in 2013, 32 lawyers who took the exam in 2014, and 20 lawyers who took the exam earlier this year.

    Because of his successful completion of the certification process, Mike will be permitted to use the following language when communicating about his certification to clients and to the public: “Certified as a specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law by the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Section on Workers’ Compensation Law as authorized by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.”

    Founded in 1895, the Pennsylvania Bar Association strives to promote justice, professional excellence and respect for the law; improve public understanding of the legal system; facilitate access to legal services; and serve the 27,000 lawyers who are members of the association.

    Read The Press Release Direct From The Pennsylvania Bar Association HERE.