A threshold issue in a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation case is whether the person who was injured was actually an “employee.” This is an area we have addressed on this blog in the past. Recently, the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania decided a case regarding this issue.
In the matter of Department of Labor and Industry, Uninsured Employers Guaranty Fund v. Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board (Lin and Eastern Taste), Mr. Lin was injured while renovating a restaurant which had not yet opened. Since Mr. Lin was paid by the day (not the job) and did not operate a business of his own, it would appear, at first, he was an employee at the time of the injury.
After hearing the evidence, however, the Workers’ Compensation Judge (WCJ), denied the Claim Petition, finding that Mr. Lin was not an employee of the restaurant, that his work was not in the regular business of the restaurant, and that his employment was casual in nature. Determining that the restaurant was not in the “construction industry,” the WCJ found that the Construction Workplace Misclassification Act (CWMA) did not apply.