Workers’ Comp Lawyers in Schuylkill County
If you have been injured at work, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Understanding how these benefits work, what conditions are covered, and what amount of benefits you may be entitled to receive can help you make informed decisions and better plan for your future.
As Schuylkill County workers’ compensation lawyers, we want to educate you on workers’ comp benefits as they are provided under Pennsylvania law. At The Law Offices of Anthony Urban, P.C., we know how challenging it can be to navigate the workers’ comp system. Don’t go it alone – work with a team that can protect your right to maximum benefits.
Take this opportunity to review the information on this page, or call our offices at (888) 268-0023 to discuss your claim with a skilled professional.
What Types of Injuries or Conditions Are Covered?
The Pennsylvania Workmen's (Workers') Compensation Act provides compensation for employees who are injured as a result of employment, without regard to fault. This includes work-related injuries and occupational diseases or conditions.
Injuries can occur from falling, lifting, motor vehicle crashes, forklifts, falling objects, construction site mishaps, machinery, or any number of accidents on the job – even if the worker alone caused the injury.
Occupational health conditions can occur through repetitive motion or exposure to noise, chemicals, or other hazards. This can cause deafness, loss of motion, reduced range of motion of a limb, or pain and limited movement such as carpal tunnel syndrome. An employer may be liable for aggravating a condition as well.
Medical Benefits & Wage Indemnity for Missed Work
Workers’ compensation claimants are entitled to medical benefits and wage indemnity for missing work. Benefits begin to be payable upon notice of injury for medical treatment and after five days off work on account of a work-related injury. Wages are paid at the rate of 2/3 of the average weekly wage. Injured workers cannot sue an employer for pain and suffering. However, claimants do not need to prove negligence or fault to be entitled to benefits.
An employer may issue a notice of compensation payable if the employer agrees that an injury occurred, but the employer may limit or restrict the description of the injury, and therefore the injured worker should seek the advice of an attorney. A competent attorney can ensure that the worker’s injury is properly represented, including all supporting documentation, to avoid underpayment or even an outright denial of a workers’ compensation claim.
Who Is Covered?
An employer must have workers’ compensation insurance to cover its workers, or else the employer may be subject to additional damages or penalties. Some types of workers are not entitled to workers compensation under state law, but they may be entitled to other compensation through federal programs such as the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) for railroad workers or the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) for post office and other government employees.
Resolving Workers’ Compensation Claims
Sometimes employers offer lump sum settlements or compromise and release agreements to resolve a workers’ compensation claim with an employee, which may cover medical benefits or future wage indemnity payments, or both. It is important to evaluate whether the offer is fair. Our Schuylkill County workers’ comp lawyers can offer guidance if you have been presented with the option to “settle” a workers’ compensation claim. Additionally, a lump sum settlement or compromise and release agreement must be approved by a workers’ compensation judge.
If you received an offer to settle or a notice to terminate benefits, or if you are dealing with any unnecessary delays or other issues related to your claim, you should immediately seek legal counsel. Accepting a settlement may jeopardize your right to future benefits.
Third-Party Liability & Your Right to Compensation
If you sustained an injury caused by another person not employed by your employer, such as in a truck accident, plant explosion, or construction site accident, you may also seek pain and suffering from the outside third-party tortfeasor. This would be handled as a personal injury action as opposed to a workers’ compensation claim. As an injured worker, you may also be entitled to social security disability benefits for a condition that renders you unable to work.