We have been following the status of the Impairment Rating Evaluation (IRE) process in PA closely, ever since the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania declared the IRE process unconstitutional in Protz v. Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board (Derry Area School District). This has included interpretations by the Commonwealth Court of PA in the Whitfield and Timcho cases.
As we long suspected, though, the real response would come from the Pennsylvania legislature. In their ever-present desire to bend to the wishes and desires of the insurance industry, the legislature passed Act 111 (formerly known as House Bill 1840). This was signed into law by Governor Thomas Wolf on October 24, 2018. This immediately reinstates the IRE aspect of the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act.
Since we have previously discussed what the IRE process involves, we will not again detail that information. If you would like to see more of that discussion, we would suggest reviewing the prior blog entries regarding the Protz, Whitfield and Timcho cases.