If you have been injured on the job in Pennsylvania, you may be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Since most people do not anticipate an on-the-job injury, learning to navigate the workers’ compensation claim process on your own can be a challenge.
Knowing your rights under Pennsylvania workers’ compensation law is important, and can help you ensure that you are receiving the full benefits that you deserve as a result of your injury. While many people assume that they can receive compensation for lost wages and medical bills, there are actually four primary benefits that are commonly associated with workers’ compensation claims in Pennsylvania.
- Medical benefits are the benefits that most people associate with workers’ compensation cases. These benefits are intended to cover expenses related to medical treatment for your workplace injury. Balance billing is prohibited in Pennsylvania; this is the practice of billing you for the difference in cost between your medical treatment and the maximum allowable cost under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act.
- Wage loss benefits are another category that most injured workers are familiar with. These benefits entitle you to receive two-thirds of the average weekly wage you were receiving prior to your injury. Your average weekly wage is calculated by averaging your weekly pay from your top-paying three quarters of your previous year, though low-wage employees may be able to receive more. These benefits are nontaxable, and are fixed at the date of your injury.
- Specific loss benefits are less well-known than the previous benefits, but just as important. Specific loss benefits compensate you for the permanent loss of a limb or body function. You are entitled to these benefits regardless of whether you lost time at work as a result of the injury. The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act determines the amount you receive and the duration of your benefits based on the loss you experienced.
- Death benefits may be available to surviving spouses, children, or dependents of employees killed in a work-related accident. The amount that these dependents receive will be determined by the deceased’s total number of dependents. Burial expenses up to $3,000 are also available.
When you know your rights under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, you are better equipped to seek the full benefits to which you are entitled. Armed with knowledge and the right legal advice, you will be in a position to secure your financial security during your recovery.
At Fenner & Boles, our attorneys have over 25 years of experience helping injured Pennsylvania workers get the compensation that they deserve. For a free consultation with an attorney to discuss your case, call us at 215.259.5879 or toll-free at 877.959.1811 today.