There are so many myths about Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Law. Let’s discuss some of them here.
Do I Get Full Pay After Getting Hurt At Work?
No! You generally receive 2/3 of your pre -injury average weekly wage. Some injured workers will get 90%- depending on their gross earnings. There is a statewide maximum weekly comp rate as well.
Can I Get Pain and Suffering Damages After A Work Injury?
No! Not in the Workers’ Compensation forum. However, if you have a 3rd party case ( a suit against an entity other than your Employer for negligence), then you can potentially recover these damages in that suit. Work Comp is a no fault system- the issue is loss of earning power. There are awards for disfigurement of the head, face, or neck, and amputation/loss of use (Specific Loss), but not for pain and suffering.
My Job Is Protected After A Work Injury, Right?
Not necessarily! Many people believe that just because they were injured at work, that the Employer must hold their position forever. This is not correct. If you get accepted for FMLA, you can have up to 12 weeks of job protection. But in many cases, injured workers lose their job. If the Employer cannot accommodate the restrictions, a worker could be terminated. Or if there is an economic downtown. Or a termination can occur for misconduct, etc. There are some other issues with the ADA- but generally speaking, a work injury doesn’t mean you can’t be terminated. Now this doesn’t mean that the termination is lawful- sometimes, it’s discriminatory- ie, retaliation for pursuing Work Comp. But a Work Injury isn’t an automatic entitlement to job security.
I’m Entitled To A Lump Sum Settlement After I’m Hurt At Work, Right?
No! It’s not an entitlement despite what many misleading TV commercials may say. It’s an agreement between an injured worker and the insurer/employer. While many cases end up in a lump sum agreement- called a Compromise & Release, it’s not a guarantee. If you are on Work Comp, an insurer can decide to pay you weekly or bi-weekly- they are not required by law to offer a lump sum.
For more information about Pennsylvania Work Comp Law, call Cardamone Law, LLC– it’s all we do. (215) 206-9068