As per the Governor's shut down we are working remotely, however rest assured that we are still working to protect your rights! Please email us at dbrilliant@bnlegal.com for Dina Brilliant and gneiman@bnlegal.com for Glenn Neiman or call us at (215) 638-7500 and leave a message as we are checking our messages.

A new Frequently Asked Question has been, "I have the Coronavirus, can I get workers' compensation benefits?" The answer is that, yes, you may be entitled to workers compensation benefits depending on the facts. This can be whether you have contracted COVID-19 through work, or whether you have lost a modified duty job through an employer closing or layoff. Email or call us to discuss the specifics of your case in regard to the Coronavirus or any other work injury.

Law Protecting Firefighters Creating Workers’ Comp Insurance Issues

As we discussed previously, premiums for workers’ compensation insurance in Pennsylvania have been reduced for the second consecutive period. Apparently, all is not well for the insurance carriers in PA however. It appears a change in the law has made several insurance carriers refuse to cover fire departments in Pennsylvania.

In 2011, the PA legislature passed Act 146. As we discussed on our blog, this law created a presumption that cancer in a firefighter was related to his or her employment for the purposes of workers’ compensation benefits (meaning the burden of proof would fall to the employer to prove the cancer was not related to work activities). The period within which a claim can be reported was also significantly extended.

According to a recent article on Firehouse.com, these changes to the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act made several insurance carriers drop the workers ‘ compensation coverage for fire departments in PA. Of course, communities or townships can self-insure for workers’ comp, or they, like any employer, can turn to the State Workers’ Insurance Fund (SWIF), a quasi-government insurance carrier which will offer coverage to any employer in PA.

While we, like any citizen, hate to see higher costs to a governmental entity, we also recognize the extreme dedication and sacrifice made, every day, by these brave men and women. We hope the legislature does not modify this law, to make the insurance carriers happy at the cost of the health and welfare of our courageous firefighters.