Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Claims
UPDATED: March 10, 2020
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Pennsylvania workers' compensation claims are filed when an employee is injured on the job from an accident or work-related actions such as repetitive motions, or who becomes sick due to exposure to hazardous materials at the workplace. A Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim must be filed with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry within a specific time frame to ensure that the worker receives the benefits provided for by the workers' compensation system. Pennsylvania law requires that employers have workers' compensation insurance so that benefits can be provided for injured and/or ill workers. A Pennsylvania workers' compensation attorney can explain the details of benefits as they relate to your injury and answer questions specific to your case.
Process for Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Claims
The process for filing a Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim takes place outside the traditional legal system but still requires no less attention to detail.
Inform Your Employer that You Have Been Injured
You must first make sure to notify your employer about the illness or injury you have suffered at work within 21 days of your having been injured or fallen ill. If you fail to tell your boss about your illness or injury within this strict time period, you may end up losing your right to file for workers' compensation benefits in Pennsylvania.
Seek Immediate Medical Attention
You should get your work-related sickness or injury checked out by a doctor as soon as possible. During the treatment, be sure to tell the doctor that your injury occurred on the job, as this will lay the groundwork for important evidence if the claim is later contested.
File Your Claim with the Appropriate Agency in Pennsylvania
After you have notified your employer and sought treatment for your injury, you should proceed to file your workers' compensation claim with the state. In Pennsylvania, claims for workers' compensation should be submitted to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry. After receiving notice of your injury, you must get your boss to complete and submit a First Report of Injury to the state within three years. If the form is not filed within three years of your injury, you will lose your right to wage replacement payments, medical benefits, and compensation for long-term disability.
If your workers' compensation claim has been contested or denied, contact an experienced Pennsylvania workers' compensation lawyer to help you with the claims process.
Reasons to Hire a Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Attorney
Despite the fact that the workers' compensation system is designed to be a simpler alternative to filing a lawsuit, filing a Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim can still be a stressful process. Seeking advice from a Pennsylvania workers' compensation attorney can often be essential, especially if your case has become more difficult because of complicating factors. Such factors may include: your boss being under-insured or less than cooperative, your claim being contested or denied, or a manufacturer of the piece of equipment that injured you or some other third party becoming involved in your case.
In these circumstances, an experienced Pennsylvania workers' compensation lawyer can be of great assistance to you in arguing your claim, helping you meet filing deadlines for your claim, and explaining the workers' compensation procedures in Pennsylvania. Additionally, having a workers' compensation attorney is generally recommended if you have detailed questions or concerns about your workers' compensation case.