Part One of the Top 10 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania.
1. What is workers’ compensation?
Workers' compensation is a form of insurance providing wage loss and medical benefits to employees injured in the course and scope of employment. General damages for pain and suffering, and punitive damages for employer negligence, are generally not available in workers' compensation plans, and negligence is generally not an issue in the case.
2. What does workers’ compensation cover?
Workers’ compensation covers injuries and medical conditions incurred or caused while the employee is in the course and scope of employment. Repetitive trauma, or over-use injuries are covered by workers’ compensation. Injuries that are not covered under workers compensation are: • Self-inflicted injuries, including suicide • Injuries resulting when a co-worker attacks you for personal, and not work related, reasons • Injuries that are caused by intoxication or illegal drug use • Injuries that are caused while breaking the law
3. What type of workers’ compensation benefits are payable to an injured worker?
•Medical Benefits: •Total Disability Wage Loss Benefits: •Partial Disability Wage Loss Benefits: •Specific Loss Benefits; •Scarring and Disfigurement; and Death Benefits.
4. What are some of the important time limits in a workers’ compensation case?
You must report your injury or condition to your employer within 120 days of the injury date or the date that you were aware of the condition. The employer has 21 days to either accept or deny the claim. If your claim is initially denied, you have three years to file a Claim Petition.
5. Must I treat with the company doctor?
If your employer has panel physicians you will be required to treat with these doctors for 90 days. If the employer does not have a list of panel physicians, you may treat with a doctor of your choice. After 90 days has elapsed, you are always allowed to treat with the doctor of your choice.