There are enough challenges at work that most employees do not consider getting injured. Unfortunately, accidents happen every day, and workers are entitled to compensation.
Most employers in Jenkintown offer Workers’ Compensation benefits in the event their employee suffers injuries. Injured workers can recover benefits even if they were at fault for the accident as long as they report their injuries to their employer quickly. Remember to include as many details as you can remember when reporting your accident.
Contact our experienced Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Lerner, Steinberg & Associates today at (215) 355-6400 for a free case consultation.
Workers that are Covered by Workers’ Compensation in Jenkintown
To recover Workers’ Compensation benefits, you will need to be covered by your employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance. Most employers are required by law to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance, meaning that most employees will be covered if injured at work. However, you will want to be sure that you are a covered employee in Jenkintown. You can search for your employer online to determine if they carry insurance.
Only a few classes of employers are exempt from having to provide Workers’ Compensation benefits. The most common example is federal employees, including port and railway workers. In most cases, federal workers are not covered by Pennsylvania’s Workers’ Compensation laws but can recover benefits from federal compensation programs. Another common type of employee usually not covered by Workers’ Compensation is independent contractors. If you work for a rideshare company like Uber or Lyft or are an Amazon Flex driver, you are likely considered an independent contractor and will not typically be covered by Workers’ Compensation. Further, religious organizations are usually exempt from providing Workers’ Compensation coverage to their employees. Also, you will likely not be covered if you are a seasonal agricultural worker or domestic servant.
Essentially, only employers with at least one employee working a minimum of 40 hours a week will be required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance. Fortunately, you will be covered even if you work outside of the state as long as you work for a Pennsylvania-based employer.
Will I Receive Workers’ Compensation Benefits If the Accident was My Fault?
The biggest concern an injured worker might have is whether they will recover benefits if it is determined that the accident was their fault. The good news is that Workers’ Compensation insurance is what is known as “no-fault” insurance. This means our Workers’ Compensation attorneys can help you recover benefits for workplace injuries no matter who caused the accident.
However, you still must have been injured in an accident. If your injuries were intentional, benefits can be denied. A claim can also be denied if it is determined that the employee was intoxicated when the accident occurred. Outside of intentional harm being done, fault should not be an issue when filing for Workers’ Compensation benefits in Jenkintown.
Visiting an Employer’s Physician After Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Jenkintown
After getting injured on the job, workers typically wonder where they have to receive medical treatment. In most cases, you will need to visit a physician chosen by your employer. This comes in the form of a list, giving you a few options to choose from for medical care. However, each doctor will be contracted with your employer.
This usually does not present an issue. Sometimes, though, a doctor might misdiagnose you or recommend you return to work when you are clearly unable. In other cases, your employer’s physician might recommend surgery. If so, you can usually get a second opinion from your own doctor. However, if the second opinion agrees, you will need to have the procedure done by the original physician.
Reasons for a Denial of Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Jenkintown
The Workers’ Compensation process is complex, and many ways for an insurance company to deny a claim. Knowing why claims are denied can help ensure that yours meets the standards to get approved.
The Injury was Not Work Related
A common reason that Workers’ Compensation claims are denied is that the injuries were not work-related. To recover benefits, you must show that your injuries were caused while engaged in your work duties. In some cases, a claim will be denied stating that the current injuries stem from pre-existing injuries that were caused somewhere else. However, medical exams can show how your workplace injuries were caused by the accident you are filing a claim for and if past injuries were made worse by your current accident.
Another common example where a claim is denied for being unrelated to work is when long-term injuries are claimed. This includes claims for injuries like those from repetitive motion or damage from toxic inhalation. It typically takes a great deal of evidence to show that your chronic illness or injuries were caused by workplace activities.
The Injury was Not Reported Correctly
Another reason for a claim denial is that the accident was not reported properly to the employer. This can be avoided easily if you know the rules. Basically, you should report your injuries to your employer immediately after your accident. If your injuries are such that you cannot report them right after the accident, be sure to report them to your employer within 21 days. Failure to report your accident within this timeframe is the surest way to have a claim denied.
Also, you should provide as much detail as possible when reporting your accident. This includes when and where your accident occurred and what you were working on when it occurred. The more information you provide, your claim will likely be approved the first time.
The Employer Does Not Provide Coverage
Another reason your claim might be denied is that your employer does not provide coverage in the first place. As mentioned above, most employees are covered by their employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance in Jenkintown. If you are in one of the exempt industries listed above, then you will not be able to file a claim.
The problem is when an employer is required to possess Workers’ Compensation insurance but does not. This violates Pennsylvania law, and the employer can be held liable. Without Workers’ Compensation coverage, you might be liable for your own damages, like medical expenses and lost wages. However, you can file a lawsuit against your employer if they must provide coverage but fail to do so.
Our Jenkintown Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Can Help
For a free review of your case with our Workers’ Compensation lawyers, Call Lerner, Steinberg & Associates today at (215) 355-6400.