Such benefits can be a lifeline for injured workers and their families. What you might not realize is you do not automatically receive them. The battle to obtain workers' compensation can often be a fierce fight. That's why it's critical that you have an experienced workers' compensation attorney on your side.
In Lehigh Valley, injured workers trust Vellner Law, PC to make things right. Located in Allentown and Bethlehem, our law firm has decades of experience handling complicated workers' compensation cases. Find out how we can help you. Contact us and schedule your free consultation today.
What is Workers' Compensation?
Workers' compensation is a term used for financial compensation that most workers are legally entitled to receive if they are injured or suffer a serious illness at work. In Pennsylvania, this government-mandated form of insurance provides financial assistance and medical benefits to injured workers.
Workers' compensation (also sometimes known as "workers comp," "workman's compensation" or "work comp") provides benefits for:
- Lost wages during your recovery;
- Medical expenses associated with work-related injury or illness;
- Additional Compensation for scars, sight loss, hearing loss, amputations/loss of use;
- Death benefits
You and your family may also be eligible to receive other benefits due to a work-related injury or illness. That's why it's important to talk to an attorney as soon as possible.
What Makes These Cases So Complicated?
Perhaps the single most important reason why workers' compensation cases can be so complicated has to do with whether everyone agrees on the severity of your injury. You know you have a serious injury or illness and can't work. Your employer/workers' compensation insurance carrier or a doctor chosen by them to examine you might disagree.
This disagreement over whether you have an injury – or the severity of your injury – can occur at any point. Sometimes, it's immediately after your accident. Other times, you may have been out of work for several weeks or months due to your injury when your employer/workers' comp carrier suddenly insists that you're better and must return to work.
You know your body best. If you aren't healthy, you shouldn't be forced to work or do anything that could affect your recovery. You need time to rest and get healthy. Our Allentown lawyers can help make that happen.
Here are some questions that we’re frequently asked about workers’ compensation in PA:
Am I automatically eligible for workers' compensation in Pennsylvania?
Just because you were injured at work and received medical care does not mean you automatically get workers' compensation benefits. You are required by Pennsylvania law to notify your employer that you were injured on the job to be eligible to get workers' compensation benefits. Your employer must then notify the Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers' Compensation about your injury.
How much time do I have to apply for workers' compensation?
The Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Act allows you up to 120 days to tell your employer that you were injured on the job and that you want to get workers' compensation benefits. Immediate notice is usually best. The sooner you report your injury, the better.
What expenses does workers' compensation cover?
Workers' compensation provides benefits to injured workers following work-related injuries to cover lost wages and medical expenses. In cases where a worker is killed in an on-the-job accident, the victim’s spouse or heirs may be entitled to death benefits.
Who decides if I get workers' compensation in Pennsylvania?
Your employer will have the first say in whether or not they think you're injured and eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Your employer’s insurance company can and will have an impact on your benefits as well. A doctor chosen by your employer and/or your employer's insurance company may also impact your benefits.
How soon can I get workers' compensation?
After you notify your employer of your on-the-job injury, they have up to 21 days to approve or deny your claim and issue a Notice of Temporary Compensation Payable or a Notice of Compensation Payable. After that, a doctor will examine you to verify your injury. Once verification is complete, you can then obtain workers' compensation benefits.
How can a lawyer help me with my workers' compensation case?
Your employer and their insurance company will likely be represented by experienced attorneys when you’re trying to get workers' compensation benefits. Taking them on by yourself can be a challenge. It can even put your claim in jeopardy. That’s why you should consider letting a workers’ compensation lawyer represent the best interests of you and your family.
How We Can Help You in Allentown or Bethlehem
Attorney Anthony Vellner and his accomplished legal team have decades of experience handling complicated workers' compensation cases throughout Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley. We understand how the system works and what it takes to achieve results.
Our approach starts with taking the time to get to know you and your family's needs. That way, we can address the legal issues that matter most to you. As your attorney, we can help you in many ways throughout your legal process. This includes:
- Helping you apply for workers' compensation benefits
- Finding another doctor to treat you, especially if you are not getting the care you need now
- Appealing your denied workers' compensation claim
- Defending your rights if you're ordered to return to work - even if you're not healthy
- Representing you in court at any Bureau of Workers' Compensation Hearings (virtual or in-person)
Don't get hurt twice. You've already suffered a serious injury or illness at work. Don't let your employer or their insurance companies push you around. Take a stand, put the power of an experienced attorney on your case and contact our law firm. Schedule your free consultation right now at our Allentown or Bethlehem offices. If you can’t come to us, we can come to you.