Pennsylvania Worker’s Comp Cases
Workers Compensation Attorney Serving Bucks County, Lehigh County, Montgomery County and Philadelphia
Workers’ Compensation Lawyers In Pennsylvania
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Worker’s Compensation, sometimes referred to as “Workman’s Compensation” or “Worker’s Comp”, is the name given to a system of laws meant to protect injured workers. The goal is to make sure that somebody who is injured at work receives appropriate medical care, lost wages relating to the on-the-job injury, and, if necessary, retraining and rehabilitation, so as to be able to return to the workforce. When workers are killed on the job, members of the workers’ families are ordinarily eligible for benefits.
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You have the right to be represented by an attorney for your work-related injury.
Your attorney will help you in seeing that your rights are properly protected. While individuals can sometimes represent themselves in these matters, it is best to contact a workers’ compensation lawyer as soon as possible after an accident or diagnosis of a disease or condition in order to protect your legal rights. Workers’ compensation laws are constantly changing and a lawyer will be in the best position to advise you in order to protect your rights.
What should I do if I get injured on the job?
Seek emergency medical attention if needed. Immediately report your injury to your employer. An injured worker must report any accident to their employer or any supervisor. Notification must be done within a set amount of time as set by state law. If an injury occurs over time (for example, a breathing problem or carpel tunnel syndrome), you must report your condition soon after you discover and realize that it is caused by your work. Your employer will provide you with a claim form on which you must describe your injury and how, when, and where it occurred. Make sure you save copies of all correspondence with your employer, its insurance carrier, and your doctor concerning your workers’ comp claim.
What are the most important things an injured individual should know about workers’ compensation rights?
Always report a work injury even if you might not lose time from work or need immediate medical care. It is critical that you require your employer to complete an accident report.
Remember to keep an independent record of the date, time, and nature of your work injury. In addition, make a list of witnesses as well as the person to whom the injury is reported.
Be sure to provide a complete and accurate account of the type of injury you sustained and how your injury occurred as well as your past medical history.
If your employer fails to accept your claim within 21 days of the date you notify them, seek legal assistance and file a petition for compensation.
Should your employer accept your injury, be certain that the wages upon which your compensation is based are accurate. In most cases your compensation should be 66 2/3% of your gross wages from all sources of employment.
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If, after receiving compensation, your employer or the insurance company asks you to see another physician, seek legal advice immediately as this is your employer’s first step in their attempt to either terminate your compensation or modify your benefits.
It is possible that your employer may offer you modified work based on medical proof that you are able to perform that work. This can cause you to lose your benefits by failing to accept the newly defined work.
You might be contacted by a vocational rehabilitation firm attempting to find you a new job. Your compensation can be effected if you fail to cooperate with the vocational firm.
Should you receive a petition in the mail to terminate, suspend or modify your compensation, seek legal advice.
NEVER sign a supplement agreement or final receipt without having it reviewed by an attorney.
What are the rights and responsibilities of the injured worker?
An injured worker may be entitled to:
- Receive wage benefits
- Receive medical care reasonable and necessary to treat a work-related injury or illness without any specific time limit
- Initially choose a doctor under certain circumstances
- Hire an attorney to help get benefits or to help resolve disputes, and/or confidentiality.
If you are injured, you may be responsible to:
- Inform his or her employer about a work-related injury or illness
- Complete a claim form and submit it to the employer, and/or tell his or her doctor how the injury occurred and if it was work related.
What injuries are covered?
Any worker who has sustained an injury arising out of and in the course of their employment has a potential workers’ compensation claim. As long as your injury is job-related, it’s covered.
What workers’ compensation benefits am I entitled to?
You may be entitled to receive all reasonable and necessary medical treatment, benefits for lost wages, benefits for specific injuries resulting in permanent losses such as loss of use of an extremity and/or disfigurement (scars). You may also qualify to participate in certain physical and vocational rehabilitation programs. If the injury causes the death of an injured worker, burial expenses are covered and the spouse and/or dependents of the deceased worker may be entitled to certain benefits.
If you become temporarily unable to work, you’ll generally receive two-thirds of your average wage up to a fixed ceiling. These benefits are tax-free. You will be eligible for these wage-loss replacement benefits as soon as you’ve lost a set amount of work because of an injury or illness that is covered by workers’ compensation as set by state law.
IMPORTANT! You may have the right to be reimbursed for property damage, medical expenses, lost wages, permanent injury, mental anguish, loss of life’s pleasures and for your pain and suffering.
ALSO IMPORTANT! It is very important to see a doctor right away after any accident. Don’t dismiss your injuries as minor. Get to a doctor as soon as possible and be guided by their advice.
CALL US IMMEDIATELY – we can help you understand what your rights are. You can not expect to get a fair settlement for your injuries and/or damages unless you know what you’re entitled to?
WARNING! The following are critical guidelines after you are injured or made ill:
- Don’t sign any forms that are blank
- Don’t discuss your case with anybody except your attorney, your doctor or your own personal insurance agent
- Don’t ever talk to the other person’s insurance company without your attorney
- Don’t talk to anybody who solicits you over the phone about your accident or illness
- Don’t ever sign any release from liability unless your lawyer approves it
- Don’t sign or cash any checks that may be sent to you by the insurance company with out reviewing them with an attorney – often times by signing the first check you are agreeing that the claim is settled!
CALL US TODAY – WE CAN HELP YOU GET THE SETTLEMENT YOU DESERVE!
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For a free initial consultation about an accident case in eastern Pennsylvania, contact Applebaum & Associates.