Workers’ compensation can be a very difficult claim to make for many Pennsylvania employees. Your employer will obviously want to refute your claim, even though you desperately need to work. It’s important to know your rights as an employee in the Keystone State. Check out these frequently asked questions about workers’ compensation.
DO I HAVE A CLAIM?
Knowing if you have a claim is as easy as giving us a call or submitting your claim. Click here for some additional information and we will get back to you shortly with a free consultation on the merits of your case.
DO I NEED AN ATTORNEY?
If you are not receiving the cooperation that you think you deserve from your employer or their insurance company, then you most likely will need an attorney. For example, say your employer has denied that the accident that caused your injuries occurred at work. They may even make it seem like you had the injury before getting to work, or simply deny that you are injured at all. If this seems familiar to you, you may need an attorney.
Other reasons it is wise to get a workers’ compensation attorney include:
- Your employer cuts your hours
- Your employer refused to put you on light duty
- Your employer asked you not to come in without pay due to your injury
WHAT CAN AN ATTORNEY HELP ME ACHIEVE?
One of the more important functions of a workers’ compensation attorney is to help you evaluate your case right from the beginning. The attorney will review the facts of your case, apply the law, and give you an idea of the strength of your case and your chances of success, based on his or her experience. While you may feel you have been injured and want to sue as a matter of principle, it does not mean that you have a valid legal claim. The lawyer’s job is to help you determine if the matter is worth your time, the legal costs, and the court fees.
HOW DOES WORKERS’ COMPENSATION WORK?
When it comes to filing a workers’ compensation claim, it is imperative that both the employee and employer work in a timely fashion to submit the claim. When the workplace injury occurs, the employer must provide the appropriate paperwork to the employee and file with their insurance provider. In addition, both parties must comply with state laws.
The employee must notify the employer of the details of the injury such as when and where it occurred and how it happened as soon as the incident occurs. From there, the employer can file a claim that will be either approved or denied.
WHY WAS MY WORKERS’ COMPENSATION DENIED?
There are a variety of reasons why your workers’ compensation claim was denied by the insurance company. The most common reasons are:
- The injury didn’t happen at work
- You missed critical filing deadlines
- You were injured while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol
- You did not receive treatment by an approved medical provider
- You did not seek medical treatment
- Your injury was the result of a preexisting condition
- You were in the wrong when the injury occurred (ie. you were not working appropriately)
- Your employer disputes your claim
HOW LONG DOES WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BENEFITS LAST?
The length of time your workers’ compensation will last depends on a variety of factors. The most prominent is the injury classification.
- Temporary Total Disability: Workers’ compensation benefits can be collected up to 90 days.
- Permanent Total Disability: Your employer’s insurance may require an independent medical examination to evaluate your condition after 104 weeks off. If you are less than 35% impaired, your status will change to partial disability.
- Permanent Partial Disability: You can collect benefits for a maximum of 500 weeks; however after that time, an independent medical examination will see if you have the right to petition for total disability status.
- Specific loss benefits: If you have an injury that results in serious disfiguration, like loss of a limb, you may get a one time workers’ compensation payout.
- Death benefits for survivors: Should you pass as a result of your injuries, your surviving dependents and spouse may receive a lump sum to help with burial expenses and weekly wage losses.
HOW MUCH WILL I RECEIVE ON WORKERS’ COMP?
The amount of money you may receive at a maximum weekly on workers’ compensation changes yearly. In 2020, the weekly maximum rate is $1,081.
I NEED HELP ON MY WORKERS’ COMPENSATION CLAIM. WHO CAN I CALL?
If you are struggling with a workers’ compensation claim or are wondering if you need to pursue legal action against your employer or insurance carrier, Fellerman & Ciarimboli has the experience you need to protect your rights. Contact the Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorneys today.