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What Every Pennsylvania Worker Should Know About Worker’s Compensation

work injury accident

Worker’s Compensation is a type of insurance coverage that helps financially and medically support injured workers that have been harmed on the job as they recover. The benefits aim to cover the daily life of workers while they take on the healing process to rejoin the work force. However, too few workers in Pennsylvania are aware of the potential coverage and how the benefits work.

How are the Claims Handled in Pennsylvania?

There are two separate laws that govern and regulate Worker’s Compensation claims in the state of Pennsylvania: the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act and the Occupational Disease Act. The two pieces of legislation are enforced by special administrative judges, referred to as Worker’s Compensation judges. When an appeal occurs, it is handled by the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board. Only under rare and extenuating circumstances is a claim heard by the local Court of Common Pleas.

How Soon Should an Employer be Informed of a Work Injury?

There are time limits on claims that must be adhered to in order to retain rights to benefits. As such, the sooner an employer is informed of a work injury, the better. A worker has up to 30 days from the first manifestation of an injury, illness or disease to inform the employer. However, there is no advantage to waiting whereas there are many benefits to informing the employer right away.

When Should I Expect the Insurance Company to Pay for Medical Expenses?

The insurance company is required to pay all medical expenses within 30 days from the time they receive the bills and records from the healthcare provider. In most cases, an insurer won’t pay bills without informing the injured worker. However, in many cases, the injured worker won’t know there was a failure to pay until the health care provider informs them rather than the insurer. If an insurer fails to pay a claimant’s bills, they take on the risk for penalties of non-payment.

Is It Possible to Receive a Lump Sum Settlement?

Nearly all claimants are eligible to receive a lump sum settlement but the amount awarded depends on the severity of the injury, how much the worker earned on the job prior to becoming injured, how the physician treating the injury describes the injury and many other relevant factors. In some cases, a lump sum is not the best strategy, depending on the circumstances of the case.

At Vanasse Law LLC, we have years of focused experience in Worker’s Compensation claims. If you are unsure of how to proceed with your claim, contact us today to talk to a seasoned professional.

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