Injuries suffered on the job are unexpected but not uncommon. If you have been injured at work in Springfield, you can likely receive benefits after filing a Workers’ Compensation claim.
Most employers are required to carry Workers’ Compensation, and injured employees have a right to recover, no matter who caused the accident. However, important rules and deadlines play an important role in every Workers’ Compensation claim, which our Workers’ Compensation attorneys can walk you through.
To receive a free case review with our Workers’ Compensation attorneys, reach out to Lerner, Steinberg & Associates at (215) 355-6400 today.
Understanding the Workers’ Compensation System in Springfield, PA
Workers’ Compensation insurance is a special type that most Pennsylvania employers must carry to cover employees injured while at work. However, Worker’s Compensation benefits only extend to “traditional” employees and might not cover employees if they are independent contractors or domestic servants. There are other limitations that every worker should be aware of in case they one day need to take advantage of their employer’s insurance.
In many workplace accidents, Workers’ Compensation will typically be the only legal remedy to recover damages for your injuries. In most cases, injured workers cannot file a lawsuit against their employer. This is why they must carry Workers’ Compensation insurance and provide it no matter who caused the accident. Lawsuits against an employer can only be filed if they fail to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance or they intentionally caused your injuries.
Workers’ Compensation is intended to cover losses like medical expenses, lost wages, and even wrongful death benefits. However, specific timeframes will be applied depending on the worker’s injuries. In Pennsylvania, benefits typically take seven days before becoming available. Once approved, Workers’ Compensation benefits are not intended to last indefinitely. If your injuries still prevent you from returning to work by the time your benefits are exhausted, you can apply for permanent disability benefits under Workers’ Compensation.
Types of Employees Covered by Workers’ Compensation in Springfield, PA
Workers’ Compensation in Pennsylvania is intended to cover most workers injured on the job but does not cover all types of employees. The term “employee” is vague and can come in many forms, but it typically includes a relationship where one party is performing services for another for compensation. However, there is much more to an employee-employer relationship. Employers usually exercise a great deal of control over a traditional employee, including setting their schedule, and can fire them if necessary.
This might not be the case if the employee is an independent contractor. Independent contractors are not considered employees under Pennsylvania’s Workers’ Compensation law and will not be covered in the event they are injured. However, it is possible that your employer misclassified you as an independent contractor, so you could still be eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits.
Fortunately, Workers’ Compensation coverage typically goes into effect on your first day of work. That means if you are injured the first time you walk through the doors at work, you will be covered. Your benefits will not be reduced an any way simply because you are a new employee. Thus, you can file as long as you are employed, even if you were told otherwise.
How to Make a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Springfield, PA
Filing your Workers’ Compensation claim as soon as possible after an accident is crucial to recover the compensation you deserve. Many workers mistakenly believe that their employer must submit their Workers’ Compensation claim to the insurance company. However, this is not the case. Employers are only required to file an initial report of your injuries with the insurance company, which serves to inform them of the incident and preserve your eligibility to recover compensation. After that, you will need to provide evidence to support your claim and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
The process of filing a Workers’ Compensation claim demands patience. While you may receive payments within a few weeks, it is not a guarantee that your claim has been approved. Your payments could come to an abrupt halt if the insurance company decides to deny your claim after conducting further investigations into your incident.
Once your claim is acknowledged, your employer’s insurance provider can take a maximum of 90 days to scrutinize your claim further. Therefore, ensuring that your Workers’ Compensation claim is as accurate as possible is imperative to prevent any disruptions to your benefits being distributed. If your Workers’ Compensation claim is not denied within the 90-day period, it is approved automatically.
Benefits You Could Recover in a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Springfield, PA
Workers’ Compensation is a valuable resource for employees who sustain job-related injuries. Filing a claim is crucial since it might be the only option available to recover your financial losses resulting from your workplace injury. However, it is essential to note that Workers’ Compensation does not compensate for all the damages you suffered, including pain and suffering.
Workers’ Compensation is primarily designed to cover your medical expenses related to treating your injuries. The medical benefits you can recover under a Workers’ Compensation claim include treatment from medical professionals such as doctors, chiropractors, and other specialists you may need to see. Surgical expenses, if required, should also be covered. Your compensation should also cover visits to the hospital, physical therapy sessions, and prescription medications.
You can also recover your lost income from missed time at work. However, it’s important to note that Workers’ Compensation only covers a certain amount of your income. Generally, Workers’ Compensation provides injured employees with about two-thirds, or 66.6%, of their weekly income. The length of time that you receive benefits will depend on the severity of your injury and which part of your body was affected. If you meet the criteria for total disability benefits because you can no longer work, you may receive benefits indefinitely.
Our Springfield, PA Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Are Here to Protect Your Rights
For a free case review with our Workers’ Compensation lawyers, contact Lerner, Steinberg & Associates at (215) 355-6400 today.