Workers’ Compensation is a type of insurance that provides employees with cash benefits and medical care if they become disabled and cannot work because of an injury or illness that is related to their job. Almost all employees in Pennsylvania are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they suffer a work-related injury because the law requires every employer to provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage. The types of benefits and amount of compensation under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act depends, of course, upon the particular circumstances surrounding the incident.
The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry reports that 85,000 people are injured each year in work related accidents in Pennsylvania alone. Fortunately, those disabled workers are protected by the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act.
- The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act applies to almost all work-related injuries, illness and diseases that occur:
- in Pennsylvania, or
- to Pennsylvania employees working under certain circumstances in another state.
- As a general rule, every Pennsylvania employee is entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits if:
- they sustain an injury, illness or disease, and
- it occurred during the course and scope of employment.
Like may aspects of the legal system, however, there are special exceptions to these general rules about workers’ compensation. Depending on the type of work being performed or an employee’s position within a company, some Pennsylvania employees may also be covered by additional compensation laws, and others may not be covered at all. Moreover, if a work-related injury was the result of negligence by a third party other than the employer, or was caused by a defective product such as dangerous equipment or tools, an injured employee may also have a third party cause of action in addition to a workers’ compensation claim.
There are several types of workers’ compensation benefits such as payments for lost wages, specific loss benefits, death benefits, and medical care. An employee may be entitled to one or more of these types of benefits, depending on the specific circumstances surrounding the work-related injury, illness or disease.