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PA Workers Comp: Not Following The Rules

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We’ve discussed fault many times in the past. In most PA workers’ compensation cases, fault is not a determining factor in whether or not a person is entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. If an injury takes place at work, it is work-related, and the injured person is entitled to benefits. 
 
Often, employers will say that they will refuse to pay benefits because the employee was not following safety procedures or breaking a rule.
 
Yes, people do get injured when the rules are broken. However, it is the job of the employer to make sure that all rules are followed and understood. This is especially true if the supervisor allowed a specific rule to be continually broken.
 
Furthermore, it is the responsibility of your employer to make sure that all employees are thoroughly trained and fully aware of all rules and safety measures. It is not possible for an employee to safely perform a task if they have not been told how to do so. 
 
It’s also best practice for all workplaces to have easily accessible safety guides that employees can look over at any time. 
 
If you have been injures on the job and your employer is telling you that the injury was your fault for breaking a rule or not following safety procedures, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at 717-234-2402 for a FREE consultation. We provide services to ALL of Pennsylvania, including the Harrisburg, Bethlehem, and Reading areas. 
 

PA Workers Comp Injury: Shoulders

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Shoulder injuries are one of the most common work-related injuries people receive in Pennsylvania. The most common types of shoulder injuries are rotator cuff tears, shoulder impingement syndrome, shoulder instability, and shoulder sprains. 
 
Workers most likely to receive shoulder injuries are those that work with their arms and do a lot of lifting and moving around.  Below are a few tips you and your coworkers can use to avoid receiving a shoulder injury. 
 
Use Proper Lifting Technique
One of the most important ways to avoid receiving a work-related shoulder injury is to use proper lifting technique. Keep your feet shoulder width apart, squat, and maintain good posture. Lift slowly, use your feet, and lead with your hips. Proper technique also includes not lifting anything that is too heavy. Never be afraid to ask for help if something is too heavy. 
 
Take Plenty of Breaks
It’s important that you take plenty of breaks. This is especially true if you are frequently repeating a particular motion, which can lead to a repetitive strain injury. It’s recommended that you take a short 10-15 minute walk and/or do a few simple stretches every hour. 
 
Sit With Proper Posture
Shoulder injuries are not confined the people with labor jobs. They can also occur in an office environment. In fact, it is estimated that, in 2013, over 45,000 people in the Harrisburg-Carlisle area worked in an office environment. The best way to avoid a shoulder injury while working a desk job is to use proper ergonomics. Don’t slouch, keep your shoulders relaxed, and keep the head level. 
 
If you live in the Harrisburg, Pottsville, or Allentown area and have received a work-related shoulder injury, contact PaWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a FREE consultation. DO NOT miss out on the benefits you are entitled to.
 

Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation: Assault and Workplace Violence

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Almost 2 million Americans report incidents of workplace violence each year. This is a scary statistic, because every person has the right to a safe and comfortable work environment. One of the most common questions we receive is whether or not victims of workplace violence are entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. 
 
The answer to this question generally depends on the circumstances surrounding the incident.  Incidents that occur BECAUSE of employment are covered, while incidents that only occur DURING employment are usually not covered. Below are some explanations as well as some examples of each category. 
 
Because of Employment
Incidents that occur because of employment include incidents that arise out of or are worsened by a situation that took place at work. For example, if a nurse is treating a difficult and violent patient and, as a result of doing his or her job, is struck or knocked over, any injuries the nurse received would be covered by Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. Another similar example would be a violent retail customer, as long as the violence that took place was not the result of personal issues between the attacker and the employee.  
 
During Employment
Unfortunately, injuries that merely occur DURING working hours, and are not a result of a person’s job, are not usually covered by Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. Let’s say, for example, Steve and Jeff get into an argument over the weekend. On Monday, Steve visits Jeff at his place of employment, punches him in the face, and breaks his nose. Since the altercation was personal and had nothing to do with work, the Jeff would not likely be able to get workers’ compensation benefits for his injury. 
 
If, however, when Steve showed up at the workplace he was egged or provoked by some of Jeff’s coworkers, it’s possible that Jeff would be entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. 
 
Determining the validity of a case on your own can be difficult. If you are ever the victim of workplace violence, it’s in your best interest to contact a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney to find out whether or not you should pursue legal action. 
 
If you live in the Harrisburg, State College, or Scranton area, contact PaWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a FREE consultation. DO NOT miss out on the benefits you are entitled to. 
 

PA Workers’ Comp Claims: Strange Cases

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In most cases, if you have been injured on the job and must either miss work or seek medical treatment to recover, you are entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. However, some cases are a little more confusing than others. Below are some of the circumstantial questions we have received as well as some information regarding whether or not they are entitled to benefits. 
 
1. I was injured while on my lunch break. Am I entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits? 
 
Usually, injuries that take place when an employee is on his or her break do not qualify him or her for Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. However, there are exceptions to this. If an employee’s supervisor asks him or her to pick up lunch,  and the employee is injured in the process, they may be entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits deepening on a number of circumstances. Each case is different, and the best way to know for sure is to speak with a competent Pennsylvania workers’ comp attorney. 
 
2. I received a work-related injury while traveling. Am I entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits? 
 
This depends on a few things. If an employee is injured on their regular commute or from work, no, the injury is most likely not covered by Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits. But, they may be covered if they are driving a company vehicle and the injury is the result of issues with the vehicle. Furthermore, if the employee was required to travel outside of his or her normal route (for example, to attend a conference, go on a business trip, or run a work-related errand after work), the injured person may be entitled to benefits, regardless of whether or not they are in a company vehicle. Again, to know for sure, it’s best to contact a competent workers’ comp attorney. 
 
3. If my injury occurred while I was breaking a company rule or not following safety procedures, can I still get Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits? 
 
Employees in this situation often feel like the injury is their fault, which is something we’ve discussed a few times in the past. However, fault is not typically a factor in Pennsylvania workers’ comp. Typically, the outcome depends on how severe behavior has been and whether or not the worker has been properly and thoroughly trained. For example, injuries that involve horseplay may qualify the injured party for workers’ compensation if the supervisor is aware of the behavior and has been allowing it to go on. Furthermore, if an employee has not been thoroughly trained of all rules and safety procedures, he or she cannot be expected to know how to do everything properly. 
 
If you have been injured on the job and live in the Harrisburg, Williamsport, or Lewistown area, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a free consultation. 
 

It’s Important to Report Your Work Related Injury ASAP

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If you live in Pennsylvania and have been injured on the job, you don’t have time to spare. The longer you go without reporting your work-related injury to your employer, the greater the chances are of your claim being denied.

 

Technically, you have 120 days after an injury takes place to report it. However, there are many reasons you should not wait this long to tell your employer about the injury.

 

The longer you wait, the more suspicious you are going to look. It’s unethical, but even if you report your injury within the 120 day time limit that Pennsylvania law allows you to have, you can guarantee the opposing attorney is going to ask why you waited such a long time to bring the injury to the attention of your employer. They will most likely try to accuse you of faking or exaggerating your injury. It’s in the best interest of all injured persons to not give the opposing side a chance to work with this argument. 

 

If, however, an injury is reported right away, it is a lot easier to prove. If you are standing in front of your employer, injured, immediately after a work-related accident, it is going to be pretty difficult for your company to call you a liar.

 

It’s also in the best interest of your health to report all injuries immediately so that you can get checked out by a doctor. NEVER try to work through the pain. This can lead to a worsened condition. Even if you think an injury is no big deal, it’s still important that you stop working right away and get yourself checked out by a medical professional.

 

If you have been injured on the job and your employer has denied your right to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402. We service the Harrisburg, Williamsport, and Lewistown areas, amongst all other parts of Pennsylvania. Do not miss out on the benefits you are entitled to!

PA Workers Comp: What Happens if I Refuse Treatment?

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In regards to your Pennsylvania workers’ compensation case, you have the right to refuse any treatment at any time. However, what most people want to know is how refusing treatment will impact their Pennsylvania workers’ compensation claim. 
 
Unlike many areas in PA workers’ comp, this issue is fairly black and white. Pennsylvania courts have determined that if an injured worker refuses any “reasonable medical treatments” in regards to their work related injury, they forfeit their right to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation. 
 
A “reasonable medical treatment” is defined as a treatment that has a high probability of curing a health problem and enhancing the injured worker’s prospect for gainful and fulfilling employment.
 
Basically, if your doctor recommends a treatment and you refuse it, your PA workers’ compensation benefits will most likely be terminated. However, one very important thing to keep in mind is that the doctor is the only person who should be recommending treatments. Your employer or the insurance company should not be recommending that you do anything and, if they do, you need to speak with a competent Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney immediately. And, most importantly, DO NOT begin any treatments without consulting with your doctor. 
 
If you have been injured on the job, live in the Harrisburg, Chambersburg, or Gettysburg area, and have been denied Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a free consultation. Do not miss out on the benefits you are entitled to. 

PA Workers Compensation: Who Has Your Best Interest In Mind?

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In this post, we may be painting with a bit of a broad brush, but in most cases, it can be pretty easy to determine who has your best interest in mind when filing a Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim.   Below is some information you can use to determine what you can expect from each of these parties. 
 
Your Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Attorney
Obviously, your PA workers' compensation attorney is going to be looking out for your best interest. However, it is to your advantage to hire an attorney that is experienced and certified in the field of Pennsylvania workers' compensation. If your attorney tells you to do something, you have no reason to mistrust them. 
 
Your Employer
If your employer denies your Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim, there is a good chance they are hiding some information from you. Employers will often come up with invalid excuses for not allowing someone to receive Pennsyvalnia workers' compensation benefits. They will often bully their workers into believing that the injury was the fault of their own, that their injury is not serious enough for Pennsylvania workers' compensation, or even tell them that if they file for workers' comp they will be fired. These are all unethical tactics used to bully people around. You should never believe anything your employer tells you in regards to Pennsylvania workers' compensation without first consulting with an attorney. 
 
The Insurance Company
The insurance company will likely be even more against you than your employer. They will do anything they can to avoid covering your Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim. This includes hiring private investigators to follow you around with a camera, monitoring your social media accounts, and accusing you of fraud. 
 
The Independent Medical Exam Doctor
For your Independent Medical Exam, you are required to visit a doctor of the insurance company's choosing. Because of this, there is a good chance they are going to do whatever they can to side with the insurance company. To get the most out of this exam, it's in your best interest that you memorize the details, arrive on time, and be polite. The last thing you want to do is anger or lie to your doctor. 
 
If you live in the Harrisburg, State College, or Lancaster area and have been injured on the job, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a free conslutation. Do not miss out on the benefits you are entitled to. 

Tips for Having Your PA Workers’ Comp Claim Accepted

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It's no secret that insurance companies will do all they can to get out of covering a Pennsylvania workers' compensation claim. Below are a few tips you can use increase your chances of not being rejected. 
 
1. Report Your Injury in a Timely Fashion
In Pennsylvania, you have 120 days to report your injury. However, waiting this long can still damage your case and may make you look suspicious. It's best to report your injury as soon as it happens to guarantee proper documentation. 
 
2. DO NOT Hide Anything From Your Doctor
Be sure to thoroughly and honestly answer all of your doctor's questions. If your claims support your doctor's report, the claim will likely not be accepted. Honestly answer all questions regarding how the injury took place, where it hurts, and the severity of the pain. 
 
3. Be Honest with Your Attorney
Sometimes, people will withold information from their attorney out of feat of damaging the PA workers' comp case. The truth is, an experienced Pennsylvania workers' compensation attorney knows exactly how to handle information like this and will not allow it to damage yor case. Not giving your attorney all of the facts could cause a contradiction to occur in court, which would not help your case at all. 
 
4. Follow Your Doctor's Orders
Many insurance companies will hire private investigators to make sure all injured workers are following the doctor's orders. If you are caught breaking ANY of the medical professional's recommendations, your case will likely be lost. It's in the best interest of not only your health, but also your PA workers' comp claim that you follow the doctor's instructions at ALL times. Even if you think no one is watching. 
 
If you have been injured on the job and your PA workers' compensation claim has been denied, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a FREE conslutation. We serve all of Pennsylvania, including the Harrisburg, Gettysburg, and Scranton area!
 

PA Workers Comp: What Should I Do if I am Accused of Fraud?

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Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits exist so that victims of work related injuries can put food on the table, cover their medical bills, and take care of any other basic needs while they are unable to work. Some people that receive Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits lives are changed forever in that they will never be able to work or live the same away again. 
 
It’s great that the law allows injured workers to take advantage of these benefits. Unfortunately, some people try committing workers’ comp fraud. In most cases, workers’ comp fraud occurs when a person fakes an injury at work in order to get time off. One of the worst things about situations such as these is that it gives people with real injuries that genuinely need Pennsylvania workers’ compensation a bad name.   
 
Making things even worse, insurance companies have been known to accuse true workers’ comp victims of committing fraud. If this happens, it may seem a little scary. However, if you have been honest about your work-related injury, you have nothing to worry about. 
 
If you are accused of Pennsylvania workers’ compensation fraud, you need to contact a competent Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney immediately. PA workers’ comp attorneys know the way insurance companies think and will be able to help you get one step ahead of your accuser. 
 
There are also a few important steps you should follow that will prevent you from being accused of fraud. First, it’s imperative that you obey all of your doctor’s orders. If you are told to avoid physical activity, you should not be out playing sports and doing physically demanding yard work. Insurance companies have been known to hire private investigators to catch things like this on camera, and that’s the last thing you want to happen to you. 
 
It’s also in your best interest to avoid posting anything about your workers’ compensation case on your social media accounts. Even if everything you post is completely true, insurance companies hire attorneys that will try to find a way to twist your words and use anything they can against you. Social media and workers’ compensation don’t work well together. Avoid at all costs. 
 
If you live in the Harrisburg, York, or Lancaster area and have been injured on the job, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a FREE consultation. Do not miss out on the benefits you are entitled to. 
 

PA Workers Comp and Privacy

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Many injured workers whose claims have been denied put off filing a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation claim in fear of having their privacy violated. The good news is that Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorneys and insurance companies are required by law to comply with all HIPPA rules and regulations.
 
Your PA Workers Comp attorney is not permitted to share any information related to your case (medical records, contact information, information about your employer, etc.) unless you do anything that waives your right to confidentiality. Some ways a person can waive this right are speaking loudly with your attorney in a public place, inviting others to sit in on your private consultations, or telling third parties about the items you and your attorney have discussed. However, attorneys are well aware of these stipulations, and any competent Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney will inform you if you are about to jeopardize any of your rights. 
 
Furthermore, the insurance company is not to be granted access to any information that is not relevant to your case. And, similar to your attorney, they are not permitted under any circumstances to share this information with non-related parties. 
 
Violation of these rules is only unethical but is also a very serious legal offense. If you feel the insurance company has overstepped its boundaries or has shared private information about you with unrelated third parties, you should consult with your attorney immediately. 
 
If you have been injured on the job and live in the Harrisburg, Reading, or Bethlehem area, contact PAWorkersCompHelpNow at (717) 234-2402 for a free consultation. You have nothing to lose. Do not miss out on the benefits you are entitled to.