When a worker is injured in a workplace accident in Pennsylvania, it is critical that they get their benefits as quickly as possible. Many injured workers wonder how long it will take to provide them with Workers’ Compensation coverage.
When your employer will start providing Workers’ Compensation coverage will depend on the circumstances of your case. While your employer is required to report your injuries immediately, they have a short amount of time before deciding to approve your claim. Even if your claim is initially approved, it could be denied during the first 90 days. However, employers are not allowed to retaliate against workers filing a claim for work-related injuries.
If you were injured at work, call our Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation attorneys at Lerner, Steinberg & Associates at (215) 355-6400 for a free case review.
What Does My Employer Need to Do to Start Providing Me with Workers’ Compensation Coverage in Pennsylvania?
After suffering injuries while on the job, your employer will have several responsibilities when dealing with your Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation claim. Failure to comply with the requirements placed on employers by Pennsylvania’s Workers’ Compensation law could mean a denial of the benefits you are entitled to. Fortunately, Workers’ Compensation coverage begins on your first day of work. Even if you are only training, if you have officially started work for an employer, you should be covered by their Workers’ Compensation insurance.
Pennsylvania law requires most employers to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance and places strict reporting requirements on employers when a worker is injured. Employers aware of an injury at work must report it to their insurance carrier immediately. This is the case regardless of whether the employer witnesses the injury themselves or is told about it later after it occurred. The first step will be for your employer to submit a detailed report along with your claim to the Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.
Your duty under the law is to report your workplace injuries to your employer as soon as possible. It is strongly recommended that you report your workplace injuries within the first 21 days of your accident. Still, it must be reported within 120 days of being injured if you wish to recover benefits from Workers’ Compensation insurance. However, you are not obligated to report your injuries to your employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance provider. That is their responsibility, and they must carry it out immediately, so there are no unnecessary delays in getting you compensation. Our Bucks County Workers’ Compensation attorneys can help if your employer fails to respond to your Workers’ Compensation claim accordingly.
How Soon Must My Employer Respond to My Workers’ Compensation Claim in Pennsylvania?
While an employer must respond quickly once an injured worker files a Workers’ Compensation claim, they do have some time to consider the claim before deciding on its validity. In Pennsylvania, employers have up to three weeks to respond to a Workers’ Compensation claim. Depending on your injuries, you might be unable to wait three weeks to receive benefits. Our Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation attorneys can help you file your claim and give it the best chance of being approved promptly.
After filing a Workers’ Compensation claim, you will need to wait for the insurance company to approve or deny your claim. If your claim is initially approved, you will begin receiving benefits. However, your employer’s insurance company has up to 90 days to continue investigating your claim and can deny your benefits at any point before the 90 days pass. If your claim is denied, you can fight the adverse decision through the appeals process, but this will likely mean a longer wait before receiving the benefits you are entitled to. Sometimes, your appeal might need to be taken to state court, up to and including the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
Waiting too long for Workers’ Compensation coverage can be devasting for victims. Most injured workers will have significant medical costs associated with treating their injuries. They stand to take a greater financial hit if they are not receiving benefits while also missing out on their income if their injuries prevent them from returning to work. Your claim could be denied if sufficient evidence is not provided or a clerical error is made. You can work with our Delaware County Workers’ Compensation attorneys, who can help prove that your injuries are work-related and give your claim the best chance of getting approved.
Can My Employer Retaliate Against Me for Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Pennsylvania?
When considering filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim, it is understandable to worry whether your employer will retaliate against you for your decision. This is not as uncommon as one would hope since frustrated employers might be upset over the fact that their insurance premiums are likely to go up because of the accident. However, it is illegal for an employer to retaliate against an employee for exercising their rights in filing a Workers’ Compensation claim. To do so would only discourage injured workers from reporting their injuries.
Just because employers are not permitted under Pennsylvania law to retaliate against employees filing a claim does not mean it does not occur. While it might be subtle, if you notice you are being treated differently since filing your Workers’ Compensation claim, you should speak with our Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation attorneys to determine if you are being treated unfairly.
Retaliation can take many forms, including a denial of your claim or by denying paid time off. Your employer might reduce your work hours, your responsibilities, or even your pay after filing a claim. In the worst cases, an employer might suspend or terminate an employee for exercising their right to file a claim.
You have every right to file a Workers’ Compensation claim after being injured on the job in Pennsylvania. An employer has no right to intimidate or otherwise interfere with your ability to recover benefits. Our Berks County Workers’ Compensation attorneys can help ensure your employer treats your claims fairly.
Our Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Can Help
For a free case review, contact our Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation attorneys at Lerner, Steinberg & Associates today at (215) 355-6400.