Workers’ compensation is a state-mandated insurance program that provides benefits to employees who suffer job-related injuries or illnesses. In Pennsylvania, the workers’ compensation system is designed to provide medical treatment, wage replacement and other benefits.
All workers should know these three key aspects of workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania:
Almost all employees in Pennsylvania are covered by workers’ compensation, regardless of their employment status. Some workers, such as independent contractors, agricultural laborers, and domestic workers, may not be covered. Employers must post information about their workers’ compensation coverage in a visible location at the workplace.
2. Reporting an injury
You must report the incident to your employer within 120 days from the date of injury or the date you become aware of the work-related nature of your condition. Failing to report within this period may result in the denial of your claim.
Once you report your injury or illness, your employer is required to pay for reasonable and necessary medical treatment related to the work injury. In the first 90 days of treatment, you may be required to see a healthcare provider from a list provided by your employer.
3. Workers’ compensation benefits
If you are unable to work for more than seven calendar days due to your work-related injury or illness, you may be eligible for wage loss benefits. These benefits are typically calculated as two-thirds of your average weekly wage, subject to minimum and maximum amounts set by Pennsylvania law.
Workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania may also provide specific loss benefits for permanent injuries, disfigurement benefits and death benefits for the surviving dependents of a worker who dies from a work-related injury or illness.
Remember that workers’ compensation laws and procedures can be complicated and may change over time. Working with someone familiar with these situations may make it easier to get the benefits you’re due.