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Pearson Koutcher Law Workers Comp Blog

The Pearson Koutcher Law Workers’ Compensation Blog is your online resource for when you are injured on the job in Pennsylvania or New Jersey. Featuring the latest workers’ compensation news, Pearson Koutcher Law’s articles and updated information will help you get answers to your question as well as to obtain the workers’ compensation benefits that you deserve.


2019 “Best Law Firms”

Pearson Koutcher Law is pleased to announce its selection for inclusion in U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers Ninth Edition of “Best Law Firms” for representing injured workers in Workers’ Compensation Law. “Best Law Firms” is a national group and the submission process requires that a law firm must have at least one attorney who has received high enough peer review to be listed in the current edition of Best Lawyers, a list…

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Governor Tom Wolf signs new law impacting Impairment Rating Evaluations in Pennsylvania

On October 24, 2018, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed Act 111 of 2018 into law. This law revives the previously determined unconstitutional Impairment Rating Evaluation (IRE) process for injured workers in Pennsylvania. The new law requires that impairment rating evaluations be performed under the 6th edition (second printing April 2009) AMA Guides to Evaluation of Permanent Impairment. The law also lowers the previous fifty percent (50%) threshold for the presumption of total disability to thirty-five…

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Pearson Koutcher is excited to announce the Pearson Koutcher Show with Jon Koutcher

Pearson Koutcher Law, a Workers’ Compensation litigation firm representing injured workers throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, proudly announces the debut of the Pearson Koutcher Law radio show, co-hosted by Jonathan B. Koutcher and Joe Dougherty. The Pearson Koutcher Law radio show will debut on Monday, November 19, 2018 from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm on WWDB 860AM. The show will air monthly on the third Monday of each month as follows: December 17, 2018, January…

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Saint John’s Hospice Thanksgiving Lunch

Pearson Koutcher Law is excited to announce we will be partnering with the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Workers’ Compensation Section and its Subcommittee of Charitable Events and Community Service to provide a hot lunch to those in need at the 4th Annual Saint John’s Hospice Lunch on November 14th and 15th. Pearson Koutcher has been a proud sponsor of this event since it’s initial year. Many of our attorneys have actively participated in the handing out…

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Can an injured worker receive Social Security Disability and Workers’ Compensation benefits at the same time?

Let’s look at a few scenarios to answer the question. Suppose you have been receiving Social Security Disability benefits for a shoulder injury. You then return to work part-time, four hours a day. (If you return to work full-time, or in any position in which your gross monthly earnings exceeded $1,180, and are able to perform the job for nine months, your Social Security benefits will end.) But let’s say you’re collecting a monthly Social…

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Governor Tom Wolf introduces Opioid Prescribing Guidelines for Workers’ Compensation

On July 16, 2018, Governor Wolf’s administration released Opioid Prescribing Guidelines for healthcare providers that provide treatment for injured workers. Regardless of whether you are an injured worker suffering from pain, a healthcare provider, or a concerned relative of an injured worker you may be wondering how these new guidelines will affect treatment. The new guidelines are designed to promote to safe prescription of opioids in Workers’ Compensation cases. It is important to note that…

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What is a Vocational Evaluation?

If you're collecting Workers' Compensation benefits, don't be surprised if the insurance company for your employer schedules you for a vocational evaluation? So what exactly is a vocational evaluation, and how can it affect your right to Workers' Compensation benefits?A vocational evaluation is conducted by a person with expertise on the job market -- what types of jobs are available, how much they pay, and what skills they require. Insurance companies will usually schedule these…

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What Should I Do If I Get Reinjured On The Job?

It’s bad enough if you injure yourself at work once – what happens if you do it a second time? Let’s take a look at various scenarios so you’ll have an idea of what your rights are if you encounter this unfortunate situation. Let’s say that two years ago, you injured your neck unloading a pallet while working for a company that we’ll call Smith. You collected workers’ compensation benefits for three months, underwent an…

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Eric Pearson presents education seminar to Local 1201/SEIU 32BJ members.

On Saturday, October 13, 2018 Local 1201/SEIU 32BJ, whose membership represents over 3500 Public School Employees among which are Cleaning, Bus Drivers, Bus Attendants, School Aides, Building Engineers, Maintenance, Trade Mechanics, Environmental, Pest Control Workers, Field Grounds and Inspectors, invited Eric Pearson, Esquire, Managing Partner and cofounder of the Workers’ Compensation firm of Pearson Koutcher Law to present an educational seminar to update the Union’s membership concerning the intricacies and requirements of the current Workers’…

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Eric Pearson Speaks at the General Membership Meeting of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

On Wednesday, October 10, 2018 Eric Pearson, Esquire, Managing Partner and co-founder of the Workers’ Compensation law firm of Pearson Koutcher was invited to speak at the General Membership Meeting of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Union Local 614. The meeting, which took place in Collegeville, PA, had over one hundred members in attendance. Mr. Pearson was honored to be invited and happy to assist the Union leadership in their effort to keep membership…

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If I Was Hurt While Playing For My Office’s Sports Team Or At A Company Picnic, Am I Entitled To Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

In our prior blogs, we have talked a lot about the phrase “course and scope of employment” and how that standard is used to determine what is and is not considered to be a work injury. Most people are unaware and equally surprised to learn that under the right circumstances, an injury sustained while playing on your office’s softball team or in your office gym can be considered a work injury. Right off the bat…

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What Isn’t A Work Injury?

In our previous blog we discussed what defines a work injury. We discussed the importance of the “course and scope” requirement and how activities like using the bathroom at work do not take an employee outside the course and scope of their employment. In this blog, we will explore the circumstances that exist where an injury may appear to be work-related but is in fact unrelated. The first of these situations is one where the…

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What Is A Work Injury?

On its face, evaluating whether an injury is a work injury seems relatively simple. If you are on a family vacation in a different country and break your leg on a water slide, this clearly is not work-related. Conversely, if you trip while carrying a new water jug to the dispenser in your office kitchen, this is likely to be a work-related injury… UNLESS your employer expressly told you not to refill the water dispenser…

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Eric Pearson and Jon Koutcher named to the 25th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America

Pearson Koutcher Law is pleased to announce that founding partners Eric Pearson and Jon Koutcher have each been named to the 25th Edition of “The Best Lawyers in America” for their work representing injured Claimants in Workers’ Compensation Law. The “Best Lawyers in America” list is comprised of the top 5% of private practicing attorney’s in the country. Attorneys must be nominated by other attorneys or their clients. After an attorney is nominated, they must…

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The Judge will not believe I’m hurt unless I exaggerate my complaints in PA Workers’ Comp.

One of the largest misconceptions seen in Workers’ Compensation is that a worker must exaggerate their pain complaints in order to be successful in obtaining benefits. Injured workers are almost always required to testify in any form of Workers’ Comp litigation, whether they are seeking benefits in a Claim Petition or the employer is trying to terminate their benefits. Within that testimony we often see injured workers report extremely severe pain complaints that is not…

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My employer would never mislead me about my rights to Workers’ Compensation in PA!

We are not saying every employer misleads injured employees about their right to worker’s compensation benefits but too often do we encounter cases where an employee has been taken advantage of by either their employer of their employer’s insurance carrier. Even if you have an excellent relationship with your manager or co-workers, this does not necessarily mean your employer will simply provide you with the benefits you are rightfully entitled to. Your employer is required…

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If I win my PA Workers’ Compensation case, I’ll never have to work again.

One of the most common, if not the most common, misconception in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation is the belief that the average workers’ compensation case is worth a small fortune. Unfortunately, it is relatively certain that winning your workers’ compensation claim in Pennsylvania will not set you up to retire on an island for the rest of your life. (We wish it did, so you could invite us on vacation!) Unrealistic expectations can derail a case…

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I shouldn’t bother my employer with my pain complaints unless it’s forcing me out of work in PA.

Earlier in the blog series we discussed the misconception that only people who sustain serious, one-time injuries are eligible to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits: Common Workers' Compensation Misconceptions. We explained that work injuries can be caused by the repetitive-stress of your job and do not need to be pin-pointed to a specific time, date, or incident in order to be eligible for compensation. One of the difficulties of proving a repetitive-stress type case is proving…

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I can’t get Workers’ Comp benefits in PA because I did not suffer an obvious, one-time, injury.

In the world of Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation, there are a number of common misconceptions spanning a number of topics from case valuation to medical treatment to whether you are entitled to benefits. The following Blog will state a common misconception in Workers’ Compensation cases and illustrate why it is incorrect. “I can’t get benefits because I did not suffer an obvious, one-time, injury.” Most people believe you need to suffer a one-time, obvious, injury such…

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What happens if you’re injured at work and your employer does not have Workers’ Compensation insurance In Pennsylvania?

It’s a felony for an employer in Pennsylvania not to carry workers’ compensation insurance for its employees, but despite the risk of criminal penalties, many employers foolishly fail to maintain insurance. So what happens if you injure yourself at work, and when you report it to your boss, you are told the company has no workers’ compensation insurance? This will complicate your workers’ compensation claim, and in order that your rights are protected, you should…

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Who pays litigation costs in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation?

You may have wondered: if you hurt yourself at work, your claim has been denied, and you hire a lawyer to file a petition for workers’ compensation benefits on your behalf, who is going to pay the costs that are incurred to present your case before the judge? If you hire the top-notch firm of Pearson Koutcher Law to represent you, don’t worry – it won’t be you; we will foot the costs for you.…

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How does a child support lien affect my PA Workers’ Compensation case?

If a judge awards you workers’ compensation benefits – there is a decision in your favor or a settlement is approved – and you owe money for back child support, these arrearages will need to be satisfied before you receive your benefits. Pennsylvania has a child support website, which will reveal if you have arrearages based on your date of birth and social security number. You must also be required to complete an affidavit, stating…

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How does the Appeal Process work in PA Workers’ Compensation?

We have good news and bad news regarding the appeal process in Workers' Compensation cases. If you win your case before the Workers' Compensation Judge, your employer stands a slim chance of getting the decision reversed on appeal. But in the same token, if you lose your case, it will be difficult for you to get the decision reversed. An appeal of a Workers' Compensation Judge's decision must be filed with the Workers' Compensation Appeal…

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What are the steps in the NJ Workers’ Compensation process?

New Jersey Workers' Compensation Flow Chart The NJ Workers' Compensation process is confusing. The lawyers at Pearson Koutcher Law are here to help, starting with the flow chart below that breaks down the steps of the Workers' Compensation process in New Jersey. Please read through and then give us a call with your questions. We look forward to speaking with you! Call Pearson Koutcher Law to Discuss Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Let us put our…

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What are the steps in the PA Workers’ Compensation process?

Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Flow Chart The PA Workers' Compensation process is complicated. The lawyers at Pearson Koutcher Law are here to help, starting with the flow chart below that breaks down the steps of the Workers' Compensation process in Pennsylvania. Please read through and then give us a call with your questions. We look forward to speaking to you! Call Pearson Koutcher Law to Discuss Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Let us put our decades of…

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What are the differences between New Jersey and Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation?

What is workers’ compensation? Pennsylvania and New Jersey: No fault system which provides benefits for injured workers. You don’t have to show that the injury was somebody’s fault, just that the injury happened at work. What do you do if you are injured at work? Pennsylvania and New Jersey: Report the injury to your supervisor, manager, or human resources department immediately. Describe when, where, and how the injury happened. Notice by word of mouth, email,…

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Do your actions on and off the internet jeopardize your workers’ comp benefits?

Facebook has made founder Mark Zuckerberg a multi-billionaire but it has cost injured workers thousands of dollars in their workers’ compensation cases. All too often, an injured worker will post pictures of himself on Facebook – or one of the other social media sites – dancing, playing a sport, or engaging in some other activity that is inconsistent with him being disabled and unable to perform his job. This can significantly weaken the person’s workers’…

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What are Termination, Suspension and Modification Petitions in PA Workers Comp?

If you have injured yourself at work and started to receive workers’ compensation benefits because you’re not able to do your job and your medical bills are being paid, we have to caution you: don’t get too comfortable. The insurance company for your employer is always looking for ways to reduce the amount of money they have to pay an injured worker in wage loss and medical benefits. One of the tools in their arsenal…

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Is Tendonitis covered by Pa Workers’ Compensation?

What is tendonitis? Tendons are thick pieces of tissue that connect muscle and bone together. Tendonitis is an inflammation of a tendon most commonly in wrists, arms, fingers, and legs, but can include other parts of the body as well. Who is at risk for Tendonitis at work? Tendonitis is often caused by repetitive trauma or stress injuries. Repetitive stress injuries are injuries that build over time, opposed to a single traumatic incident like a…

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Should I seek medical treatment if I hurt myself at work in PA?

If you injure yourself at work, it’s important that you seek medical treatment promptly and continue undergoing treatment for as long as you suffer pain and limitations from your injuries. This may seem obvious, but some injured workers are remiss in seeing doctors and it ends up causing them to lose their case. An example will illustrate the danger of waiting to get medical treatment for a work injury. Suppose you bend over at work…

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What is a Utilization Review in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation?

Pennsylvania workers’ compensation insurance companies are always looking for ways to limit the amount of money they are required to pay on claims. One of their weapons is a utilization review (U.R., for short) which they often file to challenge whether treatment an injured worker is receiving for his work injury is reasonable and necessary. Let’s take a look at the process and what you can expect if a U.R. is filed in your case.…

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What are the Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Pennsylvania?

If you injure yourself at work in Pennsylvania, there are primarily two types of benefits that you may receive. First and foremost, you are entitled to wage less benefits – in other words, money. You may receive wage loss benefits if your work injury has prevented you from doing your job. The amount you are entitled to is based on the wages you earned for your employer. Using on a formula which takes into account…

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Scars, Disfigurement and Workers’ Compensation

People usually file workers’ compensation claims because they have injured themselves on the job and are seeking money for their lost wages and payment of their medical bills. Many people don’t realize that they are potentially entitled to additional money if they are disfigured as a result of their work injury. Burns, cuts which require stitches and develop into scars, and surgical scars are the most common examples. Pennsylvania workers’ compensation law spells out in…

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Can I receive unemployment benefits and file for Workers’ Compensation in Pennsylvania?

Let’s say you injured yourself at work, your claim has been denied, and a petition for benefits on your behalf has been filed which is being heard by a workers’ compensation judge. The process is lengthy, and you don’t have any money coming in, so you ask yourself: Can I apply for unemployment benefits while my workers’ compensation claim is pending? The answer is, yes you can, but it’s important for you to understand the…

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Risky Business: Proceeding without a Lawyer in Your Workers’ Compensation Case

Three weeks ago, you were evaluated by a doctor which you were sent to by your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance company. You explained to the doctor how you injured yourself at work a few months back, continue to have pain and limitations which prevent you from doing your job, and are receiving treatment from two doctors. Surely, the doctor will agree that you have not recovered from your work injury and cannot go back to…

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Spring Cleaning Tips

Get tidy with these tips! Now that Spring is right around the corner, many will develop an all too familiar case of spring fever after being confined to the indoors all winter long. With the fast pace of the holidays, recommitting to busy daily routines, and Cold and Flu Season still lingering, it is easy for extra clutter and germs to build up in neglected areas. There’s no better way to remedy this issue than…

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To Settle or Not to Settle?

“To be or not to be” is a question that Hamlet was confronted with in the legendary Shakespeare play. “To settle or not to settle” is a difficult decision that injured workers are often faced with in their workers’ compensation cases. Imagine you are in this position: you have injured yourself at work, and the insurance company has denied the claim. You hired a lawyer who filed a petition for benefits on your behalf. At…

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Pain and Suffering?

Everybody’s ears perk up when they hear that a person has been awarded millions of dollars as a result of injuries sustained in a car accident or a slip-and-fall. One thing is almost certain: the person did not receive that staggering sum of money in a workers’ compensation claim. When somebody gets hurt at work, they are primarily entitled to only two types of benefits: wage loss and medical. (Money can also be awarded to…

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Can I Receive Workers’ Comp Benefits for Repetitive Stress Injuries in PA?

A person who gets hurt at work as a result of a specific incident -- moving a box, slipping on a floor, falling off a ladder -- is entitled to workers' compensation benefits if the injury renders the person unable to do his or her job. But what if somebody cannot work due to an injury caused by the day-in-and-day-out physical demands of the job? Examples are an administrative assistant who develops hand and wrist…

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9 Tips for Cold and Flu Season

It’s that time of the year again where sneezing, sniffling and coughing have become the daily symphony throughout schools, workplaces and every other public area. From December to February, Cold and Flu season reaches its peak due to the mix of cold weather and increased contact of people confined to the indoors. Annually, about 5-20% of the US population contracts the flu with an average of 200,000 of those requiring hospitalization. Having a cold or…

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Pre-Existing Medical Conditions and Workers’ Compensation

Will a pre-existing condition prevent you from receiving workers’ compensation benefits? Let’s look at a hypothetical to answer the question. Suppose that ten years ago, you injured your back in a car accident. Your pain was so bad that you needed to undergo surgery. After a few months of physical therapy, your surgeon released you to return to your job in a warehouse which required you to lift heavy boxes. In the next few years,…

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Protect Our PA

INJURED ON THE JOB? STATE LAWMAKERS COULD LIMIT YOUR MEDICAL TREATMENTS CONTACT THESE LAWMAKERS TODAY Senate Bill 936 would create a pre-approved list of drugs for workers’ compensation claims. This means that the insurance company – NOT your doctor – would be controlling your healthcare decisions. We need to stop this harmful bill. Please call these instrumental State Representatives – it will only take a few minutes of your time. Below are the names, phone…

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Super Bowl Party Tips!

It's Super Bowl Time! Every winter, people across the nation gather to watch the best teams of the season go head-to-head for the beloved Super Bowl trophy and ring. Not only do people gather for the game, but they also gather for the vast amount of Super Bowl drinks, food and fun! Pizza, wings and plenty of chips are staples for game day snacking. This year’s Super Bowl will bigger than ever for our region…

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Motor Vehicle Accidents and Workers’ Compensation

Let’s say you’re driving to your job on a rainy Monday morning and you’re involved in an accident, as a result of which you’re injured and can’t work. It’s bad enough that it’s a rainy Monday, and now you have had an accident. Will you be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits because your accident happened on your way to work? Based on a long established workers’ compensation law in Pennsylvania called “the coming and going…

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Working while on Workers’ Comp

You’re receiving workers’ compensation benefits for an injury you sustained at your job. Are you able to earn money from working and still collect benefits? The answer is yes, but it’s important that you understand the implications of your returning to work.A hypothetical will help illustrate what happens under these circumstances. Suppose you injure your back at work lifting a heavy box. You were earning $1,200 per week performing your full-time job, and the workers’…

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Facts about PA Workers’ Comp. that People May Not Know

It is common knowledge that if a person sustains an injury on the job, goes out of work, and the claim is accepted, the injured worker (known as the claimant) begins to receive workers’ compensation benefits. But for how long will the benefits continue? Under what circumstances will they stop? The answers to these questions are not common knowledge and require a detailed explanation. When an insurance company for an employer (or a self-insured employer)…

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Common Misconceptions of Workers Compensation

You have gotten injured on the job and seen a doctor who has given you a note taking you out of work. You provide this note to your manager. You hope your condition will improve, but it doesn’t. Despite continuing to receive medical treatment, you remain in pain over the next few weeks and cannot perform the duties of your job. You submit a workers’ compensation claim to your employer and expect that it will…

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Hurt at work? What doctor should you treat with? – Dave W. Brown, Esquire

You have hurt yourself at work and have to decide which doctors to treat with for your injuries. Your employer is required under workers’ compensation law to post a list of six designated medical providers, also known as panel providers, for its employees to treat with for 90 days following a work injury. These usually include hospitals, occupational medicine facilities, and other physicians. If your employer does not provide a list of panel providers, you…

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2018 Pennsylvania Average Weekly Wage Announcement:

Based upon the Statewide Average Weekly Wage, as determined by the Department of Labor & Industry for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2017, the maximum compensation payable under the Workers' Compensation Act, under Article 1, subsections 105.1 and 105.2, shall be $1,025.00 per week for injuries occurring on and after Jan. 1, 2018. For purposes of calculating the update to payments for medical treatment rendered on and after Jan. 1, 2018, the percentage increase…

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THE WORKERS’ COMP. PROCESS: BUCKLE UP FOR A LONG RIDE – DAVE W. BROWN, ESQUIRE

If you file for unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania, you will receive a determination fairly quickly – within a few weeks. If you are denied benefits, file an appeal, and appear at a hearing before an unemployment referee, a decision will be issued within days of the hearing. The workers’ compensation process, however, is much slower. If you injure yourself at work, and your employer denies your claim, a Claim Petition with the Bureau of Workers’…

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Safe for the Holidays: Safe Gift Giving

It is always better to give (safely) than to receive! It’s the most wonderful time of the year! As the holiday season reaches its peak, so do the amount of activities. Holiday luncheons, cookie exchanges, family gatherings and the list goes on.Though this year can be the happiest time of the year, it is also the busiest time of the year. Before we know it, we find ourselves shopping for last minute gifts. However, giving…

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Safe for the Holidays Article Series: Decorating Safety

Keeping the holidays merry, bright and safe! Chilly weather, a cheery glow, holiday music in every store, the holiday season is here! One of the greatest joys of the holiday season is decorating. Brights lights, elaborate displays, and sumptuous plant arrangements line the streets, stores, workplaces and the homes of many. Holiday decorations invite happiness to this time of the year.Unfortunately, there are a sizable amount of hazards that are often overlooked throughout this time…

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Pearson Koutcher Law Gives Back at Saint John’s Hospice

Pearson Koutcher Gives Back to the Community! Once again this year, Pearson Koutcher Law, in collaboration with Philadelphia Bar Association’s Workers Compensation Section, participated in serving a holiday luncheon held for 250 men in need and staff members at Saint John’s Hospice. Attorneys, Laura Brooke and Mindy Levin, of Pearson Koutcher Law were part of this year’s group of volunteers to serve. Both were able to help serve a delicious meal of ham, meatballs, pasta,…

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Safe for the Holidays Article Series: Food Safety

Food Safety As the holiday season begins once again, so comes an ample amount of holiday celebrations with friends, family and co-workers. Many will join together to eat, drink, and be merry over dinners, luncheons and treat exchanges. While these events are meant to be fun and enjoyable, there is a danger that comes with all the festivities - food borne illnesses. Food-borne illnesses are caused when harmful bacteria such as Salmonella, E. Coli, and…

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Pearson Koutcher Law gives back with Home at Last Dog Rescue!

Pearson Koutcher Law gives back at the 3rd Annual HOWLoween 5k, Dog Walk and Fall Fest! Pearson Koutcher Law attorneys, Laura Brooke and Mindy Levin, volunteered this past weekend at Home at Last Dog Rescue’s 3rd Annual HOWLoween 5K, Dog Walk and Fall Fair in North Wales, PA on October 28th,2017. Home at Last Dog Rescue is a nonprofit organization consisting of volunteers whose goal is to save the lives of homeless dogs. They do…

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Eric Pearson Speaks at SEIU LocaL 32 BJ General Membership Meeting

Eric Pearson Speaks with Members of SEIU Local 32BJ Earlier this summer, Eric B. Pearson, managing partner at Pearson Koutcher Law, was again invited to speak at SEIU Local 32BJ’s general membership meeting about workers compensation developments and general information on how to protect themselves if injured at work. Mr. Pearson often meets with SEIU Local 32BJ members. “I take great pleasure in getting to meet such hard working individuals. It has always been PK’s…

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Pearson Koutcher Discusses Workers’ Compensation and the Solar Eclipse

The Great American Eclipse and Workers' Compensation On August 21st, the United States experienced a rare solar eclipse for the first time in nearly 100 years. From Depoe Bay, Oregon carving a path down to Charleston, South Carolina, residents experienced a total solar eclipse - the moon completely obscured view of the sun’s disk for a few minutes. This is known as the path of totality. Other areas outside of the path of totality experienced…

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Pearson Koutcher Law Discusses Common Summer Work Injuries

Common Summer Work Injuries Summer time is known for bringing carefree, go-with-the-flow attitudes. Children are out of school, the weather is warmer, people travel more and spend longer periods of time outside. Summer brings less structure to a daily schedule than any other season. This lack of structure may also cause a slew of workplace injuries as well. Heat-related injuries are the most common work injury during the summer. According to OSHA's website, dozens of…

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Pearson Koutcher Law Discusses Heat-Related Work Injuries

Heat-Related Work Injury As summer arrives, so comes excessive heat waves and extreme humidity. With temperatures and the humidity levels rising, the risk of a heat-related work injury for outdoor workers increases greatly. Contrary to popular belief, employees who work outside are not the only type of workers who are susceptible to heat induced work injuries. There are a number of careers that involve exposure to extreme heat such as firefighters, bakery workers, mill workers,…

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Attorney Dave Brown Discusses the Taxability of Workers’ Comp. Benefits

IF YOU RECEIVE WORKERS’ COMP. BENEFITS, THERE’S NO NEED TO CALL YOUR ACCOUNTANT Injuring yourself at work can lead to a slew of negative consequences: pain, the need to undergo medical treatment, an inability to work, and financial loss. However, there is one advantage if you are paid money as a result of the insurance company accepting your claim, a workers’ compensation judge awarding you benefits, or the parties entering into a settlement of your…

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Impairment Rating Provisions of the Workers’ Compensation Act Declared Unconstitutional by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court

PA Supreme Court Declares Key WC Act Provision Unconstitutional Tuesday June 20, 2017, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court declared the impairment rating evaluation (IRE) provision in Section 306(a.2) of the Workers' Compensation Act as unconstitutional. The decision in Protz v. WCAB (Derry Area School District) determined that injured workers will no longer be subject to a cap on the length of wage loss benefits they received. Prior to the decision, Section 306(a.2) of Act allowed employers…

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Eric Pearson and Jon Koutcher are 2017 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers!

The results for the 2017 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers list are in! Congratulations to our partners, Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher, for being selected as PA Super Lawyers for the 6th consecutive year! (2011-2017) Super Lawyers, an exclusive list recognizing no more than 5% of lawyers in PA, is a research driven, peer influenced rating service honoring outstanding lawyers who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. Attorneys throughout the state are…

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Happy Red Nose Day from Pearson Koutcher Law

Red Nose day is a campaign led by the non-profit organization, Comic Relief, Inc., with a mission to end child poverty with the power of entertainment. Originating in the United Kingdom, Comic Relief first began its vision to aid children in need in 1985. The very first Red Nose Day was held three years later and has since raised over one billion dollars globally. In 2015, Comic Relief crossed the Atlantic with the start of…

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Client Testimonial

Attorney Eric Pearson is a highly skilled and qualified workers compensation attorney who will fight to the end to get what you deserve. Even when the insurance company sent their denial, he never gave up and fought for my rights. He challenged them and we came out on top!! He puts his clients' wellbeing first. I would highly recommend Attorney Pearson to anyone who asks for a Great Philadelphia Workers Comp. Attorney. Keep up the…

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Client Testimonial

If you are need of a workers compensation law firm, look no further. While going through my ordeal, Dave M, Dave B. and Jon K, walked me through every step of the process answering every question I had. I leaned on their expertise very heavily as they guided me through some scary times. Thank you!!! - strawsome44 Call Pearson Koutcher Law to Discuss Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Let us put our decades of experience to work…

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Client Testimonial

Eric and his staff answered all my mother-in-laws questions and helped her every step of the way through the process of her case.they made a situation that could have been very frightening less stressful. He always returned every call and was very thoughtful and caring to her needs. she was very highly satisfied with the outcome of her case thank you again Eric and staff - Christopher Orsini

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Client Testimonial

Anyone who needs a caring and compassionate worker comp lawyer should look no further than Pearson Koutcher Law. Jon works hard to get his clients the care they need, you come first. I am so thankful that Jon was recommended to me, never did I ever think I would need the services of a Worker's Compensation Lawyer. Jon and his staff (Maureen) have seen me thru the very worst part of my injury and treatment.…

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Client Testimonial

Caring, compassionate, fair, and empathetic.. These are are few words to describe Jon Koutcher and the firm Pearson Koutcher Law. I greatly appreciate the hard work Jon did for my case,.. Hopefully I'll never need to use them again, but if I do, I know they are some of the best out there! - Jeff T.

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Saint John’s Hospice – 2nd Annual Holiday Lunch

 Eric B. Pearson, managing partner at Pearson Koutcher Law, collaborated with The Workers’ Compensation Section to serve a holiday lunch for 350 people at Saint John’s Hospice for the second year in a row!!! Mr. Pearson helped serve a spectacular Holiday Lunch of Sausage and Peppers, Ham, Sweet Potato Mash and sautéed String Beans with cold drinks of Lemonade, Iced Tea and Fruit Punch followed by either Pumpkin, Lemon or Apple Pie compliments of “The Bocce Club”, Tastykake and Metropolitan Bakery In addition, the Section made…

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WHEN YOU GET HURT AT WORK, DON’T FORGET TO TELL YOUR BOSS

An employee is required to notify his or her employer within 120 days of sustaining an injury at work. This notification – “notice” is the legal term -- may be provided verbally or in writing. If timely notice is not provided, the claim is forever barred, regardless of the seriousness of the injury. It seems like common sense that if you’re hurt at work, you’re going to report it promptly. If you slip on a…

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Now listed in The Best Lawyers in America

Pearson Koutcher Law is proud to announce that managing partner, Eric B. Pearson, has been selected by his peers for inclusion in the 22nd addition of The Best Lawyers in America© 2016 for his work in Workers Compensation Law - Claimants. The selection process to be included in Best Lawyers is based on a through a comprehensive peer-review survey of over 6.7 million confidential evaluations by top attorneys. Contact Pearson Koutcher Law - Experienced Pennsylvania WorkPlace…

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STRESSED OUT AT WORK? A CLAIM FOR WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BENEFITS PROBABLY IS NOT THE ANSWER

You’re excited to start your new job, but soon find out that your boss is unbearable – overly demanding and constantly critical of your work.   Nothing you do is good enough, and you’re yelled at frequently.   The pressure that you feel is relentless.  With each passing week, it becomes more and more difficult for you to make it to work and do your job.  Your productivity declines, and you receive warnings, in which you are…

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Partners at Pearson Koutcher Law volunteer at Saint John’s Hospice!

Friday, July 15, 2015, Jon Koutcher and Eric Pearson, partners at Pearson Koutcher Law, helped serve lunch at Saint John’s Hospice. Saint John’s Hospice, founded in 1963, is a charitable organization that serves homeless and others in need. Located at 12th and Race in Philadelphia the members of Saint John’s work to provide dignity and respect to every guest and are proud to serve all without discrimination. Pearson Koutcher Law proudly supports Saint John’s Hospice…

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Client Testimonial!

Attorney Eric Pearson is a highly skilled and qualified workers compensation attorney who will fight to the end to get what you deserve. Even when the insurance company sent their denial, he never gave up and fought for my rights. He challenged them and we came out on top!! He puts his clients' well being first. I would highly recommend Attorney Pearson to anyone who asks for a Great Philadelphia Workers Comp. Attorney. Keep up…

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Safety Tip: Avoid workplace slips, trips and falls!

Why is the prevention of slips, trips and falls important? The U.S Department of Labor and Industry reports that slips, trips and falls make up the majority of work accidents. More specifically, slips and falls account for 15% of all accidental deaths, only the second-leading cause behind motor vehicle, approximately 25 percent of all reported injury claims a year are slip and falls and more than 95 million work day (65% of all work days)…

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Welcome Dave Brown and Shawn Dethlefsen!

Pearson Koutcher proudly welcomes worker's compensation attorneys Dave W. Brown and Shawn M. Dethlefsen to the firm! Mr. Brown comes to Pearson Koutcher with 21 years experience handling worker's compensation matters. He joins our Philadelphia office eager to continue passionate representation of individuals injured at work. Read more about Dave. Ms. Dethlefsen will be the resident attorney in our new Lehigh Valley office located in Bethlehem PA. She brings two decades of experience in handling…

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PearsonKoutcher supports Alex’s Lemonade Stand

Philadelphia worker’s compensation law firm PearsonKoutcher supported the childhood cancer research foundation Alex’s Lemonade Stand by attending and participating in the Frozen Lemonade Cup, a charity youth ice hockey tournament held in West Chester, Pennsylvania on March 28, 2015. Youth ice hockey players gathered for one cause: to help raise money for the fight against childhood cancer. PearsonKoutcher partner Jonathan B. Koutcher stated: “There is no better feeling than giving back, which is a goal…

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PA Workers Compensation rates scheduled to decline Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

PA Workers Comp rates decrease for the 4th year in a row! On Friday, March 27, the state departments of Insurance and Labor & Industry announced Workers compensation rates will decrease 5.99% for Pennsylvania employers, while benefits for injured workers remain unchanged. The decrease, scheduled to go into effect Wednesday, April 1st 2015, is based on a rate filing submitted in December by the Pennsylvania Compensation Rating Bureau, which indicates Pennsylvania workers comp claim frequency…

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What is the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)?

What is the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)? FMLA is an act that applies to companies of 50 or more employees and to employees who have worked for the company over a year or 1250 hours. It allows each employee a total of 12 weeks of unpaid leave because of a serious health condition during any 12 month period. During this period of time, the employee is allowed to elect or the employer may require…

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Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyer, Eric B. Pearson, moderates Continuing Legal Education program on Traumatic Brain Injuries

Friday, March 13 2015, Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Specialist, Eric B. Pearson, moderated a Philadelphia Bar Continuing Legal Education (CLE) program titled “Traumatic Brain Injuries / Concussions: An Overview.” The CLE program covered diagnosis, signs, symptoms, treatment and recovery of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Mr. Pearson addressed what is needed to prepare and handle one of these challenging cases. Mr. Pearson was thrilled to participate in this CLE program with presenter, Dr. Bryan X. Desouza, and…

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2015 Super Lawyers and Rising Star!

Congratulations Eric Pearson and Jon Koutcher for being recognized as Super Lawyers for the fourth year in a row. Super Lawyer is an honor granted to outstanding workers’ compensation lawyers who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The selection process is multi-phased and includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. It is an achievement only obtained by 5 percent of Lawyers in the state. In addition, Dave Magaldi has been…

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Hurt at work? Beware of Surveillance.

Hidden camera caught McDonald mechanic cheating workers compensation in Ohio! The Bureau of Workers Compensation in Ohio released surveillance footage of Michael Buckner working on cars while receiving workers compensation benefits. According to Ohio local news source, WFMJ, it was reported to the BWC that Mr. Buckner may be working while receiving temporary disability benefits after he showed up to his workers comp medical appointments with heavily calloused hands and dirt under his fingers. After…

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SAFEFTY TIP: LIFT SAFELY!

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), lifting heavy items is one of the leading causes of injury in the workplace. To help prevent lifting injuries at work such as back sprains, pulled muscles, wrist and elbow injuries and other related injuries, try these safe lifting techniques. Stand close to the object. Squat down and bend at the knee. Lift slowly. Keep the load close to your body. Carry small loads. If it’s…

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What is most important to know when I am hurt at work?

1. What is Workers’ Compensation? The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act is the state law that protects people who are injured while working. The law provides weekly income for those that are losing income because of their injuries, payment of medical treatment for the work related injuries, and death benefits to surviving family members for individuals killed on the job. Additional benefits may be payable for those that have permanent scarring/disfigurements on their head, neck, and…

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Workers Compensation Lawyers at Pearson Koutcher Law receive accolades from peers!

The Philadelphia Workers Compensation Attorneys Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher have been selected as 2014 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers, while Kassandra Aristide and our newest member, David Magaldi, are named Super Lawyers Rising Stars. For the fourth year in a row, Eric and Jon, partners at Pearson Koutcher Law,  have been recognized by their peers as outstanding workers compensation lawyers who have attained a high-level of professional achievement. The selection process is multi-phased and includes independent…

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Injured owners of a company not bound by the section 311 notice requirement.

Section 311 of the Workers Compensation Act provides that notice must be given to an employer within 120 days after an accident. I wrote a previous blog on the notice requirement under this section of the Act. An interesting twist on the notice requirement exists when the injured person is the owner/principal of a business. In other words, when the injured worker is actually the employer. In order for notice to be adequate under the…

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Phoenixville Hospital …Whispers of Kachinski?

One of the many landmark decisions that impacted the worker’s compensation practice was Kachinski v. WCAB (Vepco Construction Co.), a 1987 Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision that governed the standard for a return to work following a work accident.  Kachinski required an employer that wanted to offer an injured worker employment following a work injury to produce medical evidence of a change in condition and referrals to open jobs within the occupational category for which the…

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Koutcher Wins Petition to Reinstate Compensation Benefits After Termination of Benefits in a Prior Decision

Philadelphia worker’s compensation lawyer Jonathan B. Koutcher, of Pearson Koutcher, LLP won a decision where his client’s benefits were reinstated.  Importantly, the client’s benefits for the same accident and injury had previously been terminated in a prior decision for the same accident.  As previously reported, benefits can be reinstated following the entry of an order terminating benefits provided the injured worker proves a change in his physical condition by precise and credible evidence of a…

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Koutcher Wins One of the First Claim Petitions Litigated Under the New “Six L’s” Standard

Philadelphia workers compensation lawyer Jonathan B. Koutcher of PearsonKoutcher, LLP recently won an important decision litigated under the “Six L’s” standard.  In this case, an injured laborer fell through a floor, suffering catastrophic physical and closed head injuries.  In a complicated fact pattern, the laborer was hired by a subcontractor of a company who essentially renovated properties to then flip for a profit or retain as rental income.  This entity was not in the construction…

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The Mental – Mental Claim and the Importance of Proving A Highly Unusual and Singular Event

Most practitioners who represent injured workers cringe when a mental- mental claim is considered. Historically, the burden of proof was so high and difficult that a mental – mental claim was almost impossible to win. A mental- mental claim occurs when the only injury that results from a stimulus at work is mental / psychological. In 1990, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, in Martin v. Ketchum, required that an injured worker demonstrate “abnormal working conditions” in…

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Tough Economic Times Mean Company Layoffs: The Impact on a Pending Worker’s Compensation Claim

After a work accident, many employees return to work in a modified or light duty capacity. Ironically, this can be the best protection for an injured worker against an employer who may seek to end the employment relationship. Courts in Pennsylvania look very closely, and perhaps skeptically, at employers who terminate or lay off an employee after a work accident, particularly when that employee is working in a modified or light duty capacity. An employer…

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Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher Speak with District Council 33, Local 394!

Tuesday, February, 25th 2014, Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialists, Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher of Philadelphia workers compensation law firm PearsonKoutcher LLP, spoke with the executive board as well as to the general membership at a meeting of District Council 33, Local 394 (Philadelphia Water Department Employees) to provide a well balanced perspective on workers’ compensation topics and issues relative to their members. Eric spoke in depth about the interplay between section 32 (IOD Benefits) and…

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Koutcher wins claim petition for a repetitive stress injury case.

An injured meat store manager initially sustained a neck injury a decade ago working for the same employer as a meat cutter. The injured worker continued working for the same employer and the performance of his meat cutting duties on a repetitive basis made his neck symptoms worse to the point where cervical spine surgery was recommended. The injured worker was represented by Jonathan Koutcher, partner at the Philadelphia workers compensation law firm PearsonKoutcher, LLP.…

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Litigating Claims for Older Workers

We all know that clients come in all different shapes and sizes.  They also come in different ages.  For one particular age group of clients, those nearing the age of 65, litigating a worker’s compensation case can be challenging. Here are some of the important issues when litigating a claim for an older worker. Retirement:  This has become a confusing word, and there has been a lot of litigation on what retirement means and how…

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Koutcher Wins Compensation Benefits and Review Petition

An injured worker fell down steps, broke his neck and fractured his right wrist requiring surgery.  The injured worker had been receiving wage loss benefits since approximately 2007.  The worker’s compensation insurance carrier filed a Petition to Modify Compensation benefits based upon a labor market survey.  The insurance company argued that although the injured worker could not perform his time of injury sales position, he could return to work in a lighter duty capacity and…

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Jonathan Koutcher Wins Claim Petition for Employee With a Wrist Injury

The most common type of Petition we file is a Claim Petition.  When an insurance company denies the case of an injured worker, for whatever reason, a Claim Petition needs to be filed.  An injured worker has the burden of proof to establish all of the elements necessary to support an award of benefits, including: the happening of a work accident, while in the course and scope of employment, resulting in an injury that may…

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Reinstatement Petition for a Closed Head Injury Case

An employee from Delaware County, Pennsylvania in his late 20s was driving his vehicle while working when he was involved in a serious car accident.  Initially he was out of work for six months and then returned to work full duty.  He then experienced seizure type events and started experiencing closed head trauma symptoms.  The injured worker could no longer work and Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney Jonathan B. Koutcher, of PearsonKoutcher, LLP filed several petitions,…

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PHILADELPHIA WORKERS COMPENSATION LAW FIRM PEARSON KOUTCHER, LLP REPRESENTS INJURED WORKERS WHERE THE EMPLOYER DOES NOT HAVE WORKERS COMPENSATION INSURANCE.

In Pennsylvania, state law requires that an employer maintain workers’ compensation insurance for any employer who employs at least one employee who:  could be injured in Pennsylvania; could be injured outside of Pennsylvania if the employment is principally localized in Pennsylvania; or, could be injured outside of Pennsylvania, while under a contract of hire in Pennsylvania, if the employment is not principally localized in any state, if the employment is principally localized in a state whose…

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PearsonKoutcher Attorney Jonathan B. Koutcher Defeats Termination Petition For Injured Worker Caught On Surveillance

An injured worker was caught on surveillance performing activities over the course of two days calling into question his claims of disability. As a result, the worker’s compensation insurance carrier filed a Petition to Terminate his benefits. In a Termination Petition, the employer must establish that the injured worker has fully recovered from all injuries and can return to full, unrestricted duty. In this case, the physician retained by the insurance company, particularly after reviewing…

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Jonathan Koutcher and Eric Pearson Speak at SEIU Local 32BJ Meeting

On Wednesday, September 25th, Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialists, Jonathan Koutcher and Eric Pearson of Philadelphia, spoke at a general membership meeting of SEIU Local 32BJ to discuss workers’ compensation topics and issues relative to members. Eric and Jon have spoke at several meetings throughout the year. After the meeting, Attorney Pearson stated: “We are thrilled to be invited back to speak at these meeting. Mr. Koutcher added…. We appreciate being given the time to develop…

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The Scope of an IME: What the Physician Is Permitted to Do!

I previously wrote a blog about the independent medical examination (IME) process generally and why an injured worker must attend when requested by the workers’ compensation insurance company. An issue that may arise once an injured worker attends an IME is what follow up studies or testing can the IME physician request subsequent to the IME? An injured worker who attends an IME is not receiving treatment and a physician-patient relationship is not established.  Instead,…

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Jonathan Koutcher Speaks at IBEW Local 777 Meeting

On Friday, July 19, 2013, Philadelphia Work Accident Attorney, Jonathan Koutcher spoke at an International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 777 meeting in Middletown PA in order to inform Union members about workers’ compensation topics and issues thus enabling the executive board to provide their members a well rounded perspective on their rights in the work force. IBEW members work in a wide variety of fields, including utilities, construction, telecommunications, broadcasting, manufacturing, railroads and government…

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Jonathan Koutcher and Eric Pearson Speak at Local 32BJ Meeting!

Saturday, June 29th, the Philadelphia Work Accident Attorneys, Jonathan Koutcher and Eric Pearson, spoke at SEIU Local 32BJ to discuss workers’ compensation topics and issues relative to their members.  “We really appreciate the opportunity to develop a solid and trusting relationship with the members of 32BJ.  We are honored to be invited to speak at these meetings!” said Mr. Pearson about himself and his partner, Jonathan Koutcher.   Mr. Pearson continued….  “We have enjoyed the time…

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Non-Work Related Injuries can Impact a Worker’s Compensation Claim

On July 12, 2013, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court, in SEPTA v WCAB(Cunningham), issued a decision affirming the principle that an employer does not have to prove job availability when an injured worker is disabled from all employment as a result of a non-worked related injury.  The facts of this case are relatively straightforward: a worker sustained a right knee injury working as a mechanic and had returned to work in a light duty capacity; about…

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Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation attorney Jonathan B Koutcher of PearsonKoutcher, LLP wins Claim petition.

What happens when the employer alleged the injured worker was terminated for cause? A female hospital worker injured her lower back, provided timely notice to her supervisor and began treating with the employer's occupational health provider. Restrictions were placed on her ability to return to work. The employer then terminated the injured worker for alleged conduct that occurred prior to the work accident. The injured worker turned to Philadelphia workers' compensation lawyer Jonathan B Koutcher…

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Light Duty Job Offers to Union Members!

A Different Analysis: Subsequent to a work injury, some employers have light duty that is available for an injured worker to perform. If the employer offers the injured worker a light duty job that the injured worker declines in some manner to perform, a modification or suspension petition is typically filed by the workers’ compensation insurance carrier. To be entitled to relief, the employer must provide evidence of a referral to an available job that…

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Treating with the Employer’s Physicians and the Panel List

What you need to Know! Often one of the initial questions we receive from a client is whether they have to receive treatment from the employer’s doctor following a work accident.  The easy answer is…it depends. Section 306(f.1)(1)(i) of the Pennsylvania Worker’s Compensation Act provides that the employer must provide to the employee a clearly written notification of the employee’s rights and duties (including the obligation to treat with a designated healthcare provider for the…

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2013 PA Super Lawyers!

PearsonKoutcher, LLP is proud to announce that partners Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher have been selected as 2013 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers. For the third year in a row, Eric and Jon have been recognized as outstanding workers’ compensation lawyers who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The selection process is multi-phased and includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.  In addition to being nominated as 2013 Super Lawyers, Eric and…

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Casual Employment: A Creative Way for Employers to Avoid Workers’ Compensation Liability

The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act only applies to the employees of an employer.  The injured worker has the burden of proof to establish that an employment relationship existed at the time of the accident.  The determination regarding the existence of an employer-employee relationship is a question of law determined on the unique facts of each case.  Although there are a number of factors Courts will review, the key factor when analyzing any employment relationship is…

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PearsonKoutcher Lawyers are AV Preeminent!

Congratulations Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher for being recognized by their peers as AV Preeminent!  Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings provide a compelling and comprehensive view of a lawyer by probing his or her peers to rate the lawyer’s legal ability and professional ethics.  AV Preeminent is a noteworthy rating accomplishment and serves as a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence. Jonathan B.…

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Pearson Koutcher Law Attorney Jonathan B. Koutcher wins important decision regarding bonuses.

Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation attorney Jonathan B. Koutcher of Pearson Koutcher Law recently won a decision from a Workers’ Compensation Judge concerning the bonus received by employee and increased the average weekly wage and corresponding weekly compensation rate. The situation was somewhat unique and represented an area of the law not yet reported by higher courts. In this case, the injured worker sustained a severe and debilitating lower back injury requiring multiple surgical procedures. The injured…

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Thank you Local 835!

Thank you to the members of The International Union of The Operating Engineers  Local 835 for highlighting PearsonKoutcher, LLP on your website, http://www.iuoelocal835.org/.   “We are proud  to be invited into the Local 835 community and look forward to the opportunity to continue to develop a solid and trusting relationship with all members of IUOE!” said Mr. Pearson about himself and his partner, Jonathan Koutcher. Local 835 takes pride in being a progressive, diversified trade union…

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Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Recipients Save Money!

Did you know that about 150,000 people, or a little over 40-percent of Pennsylvanians who get workers comp or unemployment benefits, get them through debit cards? However, according to State Treasurer Rob McCord, users are being hit with excessive fees.  An “example of ours was people were being charged even for not using the card – they were being charged simply for moving the money to their personal account. And we thought there has to…

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Attorney Jonathan Koutcher Speaks at 32BJ Union Meeting!

Saturday, June 29th, the Philadelphia Work Accident Attorneys, Jonathan Koutcher and Eric Pearson, spoke at SEIU Local 32BJ to discuss workers’ compensation topics and issues relative to their members.  “We really appreciate the opportunity to develop a solid and trusting relationship with the members of 32BJ.  We are honored to be invited to speak at these meetings!” said Mr. Pearson about himself and his partner, Jonathan Koutcher.   Mr. Pearson continued….  “We have enjoyed the time…

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The Importance of Giving Timely Notice To An Employer After A Work Accident

Sometimes the most important element in a workers’ compensation claim, providing timely notice to the employer of the work accident and the resultant injury, is often the most overlooked. Providing notice is critical to a successful claim.  Unfortunately, many injured workers do not notify their employer of an injury that occurs at work, or when notice is provided by the injured worker, it is legally insufficient or too late. An injured worker must provide notice…

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Chronic Pain and the Use of Narcotic Pain Medication.

For chronic pain sufferers, narcotic pain medication is often prescribed.  Pain management is a controversial yet growing field in medicine. Prescribing controlled substances appropriately is often met with challenges:  manipulation of drug abusers and physicians over prescribing narcotics is balanced by a misunderstanding of the public towards narcotics and the individual suffering in chronic pain. What is chronic pain? Chronic pain is pain that lasts longer than six months.  It can be mild or excruciating,…

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Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Eric B. Pearson of Pearson Koutcher, LLP Speaks At Union Meeting.

On January 18, 2013, attorney Eric B. Pearson, partner at Philadelphia work injury law firm, Pearson Koutcher, LLP, spoke at the SEIU local 32BJ meeting to discuss workers’ compensation topics and issues relative to their members.  Mr. Pearson will be participating in steward training sessions, helping the stewards to understand some of the important requirements of the Pennsylvania workers compensation system. With over 120,000 members, concentrating in the Northeast – in Connecticut, New Jersey, New…

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Being Disabled Within the Meaning of The Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Act

The Pennsylvania Workers Compensation system is essentially set up to be a wage loss substitute for people injured at work. Disability is synonymous with a loss of earning power. Terms such as total disability and partial disability clarify the status of the injured worker; these terms have nothing to do with the seriousness or permanency of an injury. To be totally disabled in the context of a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation claim means you are receiving…

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2012: What a Year for Philadelphia Workers Comp Law Firm Pearson Koutcher, LLP

As we look back on 2012, Eric and I are so grateful to those who have supported our endeavors. In 2011, Eric and I decided to start our own law firm, which we called Pearson Koutcher, LLP, with the singular focus of representing individuals injured involved in some type of work related accident. Our goals were simple: work hard; be available to our clients around the clock; and, never lose sight of the values and…

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Philadelphia Workers Comp Law Firm Pearson Koutcher Explains Returning to Work at a Loss of Earnings After a Work Accident

After a work injury, some injured workers are released back to full, unrestricted duty by their treating physician or other healthcare provider. Sometimes, however, an injured worker is returned to work with restrictions. If you are returned to work with restrictions and experience a wage loss when compared to the wages you earned at the time of your accident, you may be eligible for partial disability benefits. The Philadelphia workers comp lawyers at Pearson Koutcher,…

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Philadelphia Workers’ Comp Law Firm Partners, Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher, of Pearson Koutcher, LLP Speak About Workers’ Compensation Issues at Union Meetings.

Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher, partners at Pearson Koutcher, LLP, a Philadelphia workers’ comp law firm, were invited to speak to union members about workers’ compensation topics and issues affecting the union members.  On November 14, 2012, Mr. Pearson and Mr. Koutcher spoke to members of The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 614, and on December 11, 2012, Mr. Pearson and Mr. Koutcher spoke to members of Local 835 Operating Engineers. The Philadelphia…

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Malfunctioning industrial equipment leads to one worker injured and the other dead!

One worker killed and another injured in a tragic industrial accident Wednesday, December 5th 2012 in Lower Providence Township, Montgomery County PA.  According to philly.com, one worker was killed after falling into a 100-foot aqua colored tower while performing maintenance, while another worker suffered injuries after falling half way through the tank.  After three house and several fire companies, the surviving man, who was wearing a work harness, was rescued. “There had been some type…

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Pearson Koutcher Gives Back!

Eric B. Pearson and Jonathan B. Koutcher, of the Philadelphia workers’ compensation law firm Pearson Koutcher, LLP, attended the Delaware Valley Association for the Education of Young Children’s (DVAEYC) 18th annual Champions for Young Children event at the Comcast Center on November 29, 2012. Founded in the 1960’s, DVAECY supports early childhood professionals and promotes public engagement to improve early education in the community. With more than 2000 members, DVAECY’s mission is to ensure educational…

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The Notice Of Ability to Return to Work Form: Does It Mean I Need to Return To Work?

In a word, no.  The workers’ compensation insurance company is required by law, when it receives medical evidence that an injured worker can return to work in any capacity, to provide prompt written notice to an injured worker advising the following: the nature of the injured worker’s physical condition or change in condition; that the injured worker has an obligation to look for available employment; that proof of available employment may jeopardize the injured worker’s…

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Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Pearson Koutcher Law Explain Psychological injuries.

In Pennsylvania, the workers’ compensation law recognizes that injuries to an injured worker can be physical or psychological (“mental”). It is not too complicated to determine whether a physical injury has occurred.   Fractures and herniated discs can be confirmed by diagnostic study, such as an x ray or MRI.  Contusions and sprains are often evident by bruising and swelling.  On the other hand, proving that a psychological injury has occurred as a result of a…

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Pearson Koutcher gives back!

On November 10, 2012, Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyer Eric Pearson, a partner at the Philadelphia work injury law firm PearsonKoutcher, LLP, attended a charity gala for Living Beyond Breast Cancer (“LBCC”) held at the Loews Philadelphia Hotel.  “When Jon and I started our law firm, says Eric, “we made a promise that we would actively participate in charitable organizations.  We are committed to raising money and helping those in need.  We will never lose sight…

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Can I file a lawsuit against my employer for injuries caused by a work accident?

In Pennsylvania, an employer is afforded great protection against a lawsuit for injuries that occur at work by an employee.  Employers essentially have immunity from employee lawsuits when injuries occur at work.  Workers’ compensation is available to employees who suffer an injury or occupational disease at work.  Workers’ compensation is the exclusive remedy in Pennsylvania for claims against an employer for work injuries. There are some exceptions to the immunity of an employer and the…

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My Checks Are Late!

When an employee performs work for an employer, they expect to get paid timely and on a consistent basis.  That same logic is supposed to hold true when an injured worker receives workers’ compensation wage loss benefits after a work injury.  Insurance companies have an obligation to pay wage loss benefits in a timely manner.  Insurance companies also have an obligation to send an injured worker wage loss benefits in a consistent manner. When this…

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Closed head trauma and Traumatic Brain Injury: Part One

More and more the Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorneys at Pearson Koutcher, LLP are representing injured workers who have suffered some form of a traumatic brain injury.  Representing an injured worker with a “closed head” trauma can be complicated, due to the serious nature of the injury, and also because the symptoms are often easily overlooked by many practitioners.  Far too often, practitioners focus only on the physical injuries of an injured worker.  As a result,…

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Actors and crew members beware: injuries on movies sets do occur!

Approximately 15 movies were filmed in Philadelphia in 2012.  Movie sets are filled with workers performing different trades, such as electricians, carpenters, stage hands, seamstresses and delivery/transport workers.  These employees perform tireless and physical jobs to ensure the movie set gets created as planned.  Accidents unfortunately occur on movie sets.  For instance, while filming the upcoming movie, “Lone Ranger”, a crew member drowned on the set; a young woman was left with a permanent brain…

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PearsonKoutcher, LLP Gives Back!

On September 29 and 30, 2012, members of the Philadelphia workers’ compensation law firm PearsonKoutcher, LLP rode in the MS 150 City to Shore, known by Bicycling Magazine as the “Best Cycling Getaway” in New Jersey where 7,000 riders join together for a 150 mile bike ride to raise awareness and funding for people with multiple sclerosis.  Almost $5,000,000 was raised coming close to the $5,200,000 fundraising goal.  Team Pearson Koutcher, LLP consisted of 6…

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HOW DO I SURVIVE WHEN MY CLAIM HAS BEEN DENIED?

In a prior blog, I shared some thoughts on why an insurance company will deny a claim. Every case is different, and insurance adjusters have different motives for denying the case. For the injured worker the harsh reality now sets in. Often this is the typical scenario: you are hurt, your employer has turned their back on you, the claim is being denied and you have no income or wages to pay your bills. Let’s…

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WHY IS MY CLAIM BEING DENIED?

The hardest answer to explain to a client who was involved in a work accident is why their claim is being denied.  Often the facts of the case warrant the acceptance of the claim by the employer or its workers’ compensation carrier.  Too often, however, this is not the case.  Cases are denied for many reasons.  Here are some typical reasons for a claim being denied: if the accident was not witnessed by another coworker;…

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Pearson Koutcher Gives Back!

Philadelphia worker’s compensation lawyers, Eric Pearson and Jonathan Koutcher attended a Margate JCC fund raising event, so children in Atlantic County, New Jersey can have access to summer camp.  Local athletes including John Dorenbos of the Philadelphia Eagles, and Bernie Parent of the Philadelphia Flyers, were in attendance to show their support.  “Giving back is important for so many reasons” says Philadelphia work injury attorney Jonathan Koutcher.  “Allowing a child to go to summer camp…

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Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Pearson Koutcher, LLP Have Decades of Experience Handling Work Accidents Connected to a Third party Claim.

Recently, I negotiated a settlement of a workers’ compensation claim that was attached to a third party settlement. In Pennsylvania, the workers’ compensation insurance company has an absolute right of subrogation, or right to be paid back, whenever an injured worker recovers an award/settlement from a third party case. For example, if you work as a truck driver and are in an accident caused by a third party, you could file a separate claim for…

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Say What? Pearson Koutcher Law Handles Workers Comp Hearing Loss Claims.

The Workers Comp Hearing Loss Attorneys at Pearson Koutcher Law have handled hundreds of hearing loss claims resulting from employees exposed to hazardous occupational noise in a wide variety of industries. If you have suffered a hearing loss you feel has been caused by exposure to loud noise while at work, it is important to contact an attorney experienced in handling hearing loss claims. There are strict time requirements for providing notice to your employer…

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PearsonKoutcher Gives Back!

Philadelphia work Injury lawyers, PearsonKoutcher, LLP, with over a combined 3 decades representing injured workers in work accidents, have supported The Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (“JDRF”) for years, most recently attending the annual charity ball to raise money for juvenile diabetes. To Eric Pearson, partner at PearsonKoutcher, LLP, “Supporting JDRF is an honor.  My best friend’s child has juvenile diabetes.  Giving back by donating money and raising awareness is the least we can do.  One…

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PearsonKoutcher, LLP Attorneys speak about workers’ compensation at union board meeting.

Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at PearsonKoutcher, LLP spoke at a United Steelworkers’ local union in Pennsylvania at an executive board meeting, updating members of the union about recent events in workers’ compensation that could affect their rights to workers’ compensation benefits.  Some topics that were discussed included hearing loss, vision loss, notice of injury and receipt of non-workers’ compensation benefits such as social security disability or short / long term disability benefits. The Philadelphia work…

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Receipt of Social Security disability and workers compensation.

The Philadelphia work accident law firm PearsonKoutcher, LLP prides itself on representing individuals who have been injured in some kind of work accident and need workers compensation benefits.  Nevertheless, we are often asked questions about Social Security disability from our clients and must explain the impact receiving Social Security disability benefits has on their pending workers compensation claim. It is important to know that there is no prohibition in the law to receive workers compensation…

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Watch what you say, watch what you do.

Insurance companies will often perform surveillance on workers claiming injury and disability.  The level of surveillance activity depends upon a number of factors, including the aggressiveness of the employer, the body part injured, the type of injury and the activity level of the injured worker.  For instance, if you have a foot injury, an insurance company may try to obtain surveillance to show how you go up and down steps, get in or out of…

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PearsonKoutcher, LLP Moves to New Office Space!

 The Philadelphia work injury law firm PearsonKoutcher, LLP has moved to 1650 Arch Street, Suite 1903, Philadelphia, Pa 19103.  “The new office space provides us flexibility for growth which we foresee in the near future,” says PearsonKoutcher, LLP partner Eric Pearson.  Locating the right space took about seven months.  “It felt as though we saw every building in the city.  Finally, the perfect space came along that satisfied our current and future needs,” according to…

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Volunteer Firefighters Get Workers Compensation Benefits If Injured “On the Job”

Volunteer firefighters, and other emergency workers such as volunteer ambulance workers, are needed in most towns across Pennsylvania. The duties performed by volunteer firefighters are often the same as the full time, salaried firefighters, and as such, volunteer firefighters are exposed to the same risks and dangers when fighting a fire and otherwise assisting the public.  The Pennsylvania legislature recognized this and rewards volunteer firefighters for their important and valuable service.  Section 601 of the…

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Am I an employee? Am I an independent contractor? Philadelphia work accident attorneys PearsonKoutcher, LLP set the record straight.

Any time a worker’s compensation insurance carrier can argue an injured worker was not an employee for an employer when the accident occurred you can bet this will be a first line of defense. This is because the Worker’s Compensation Act in Pennsylvania only applies to individuals employed by an employer and does not pertain to independent contractors. So what is an independent contractor? Am I an independent contractor? You may be asking these exact…

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PearsonKoutcher Clients Get Cell Phone Numbers of Their Attorney

Client communication is first and foremost at PearsonKoutcher, LLP.  The Philadelphia work injury attorneys at PearsonKoutcher, LLP believe firmly that client communication is the key to a successful attorney-client relationship.  We believe in this principle so much that we take the unorthodox step in providing clients with our cell phone numbers.  Clients can easily and without delay speak to an experienced work injury attorney at PearsonKoutcher, LLP.  No client gets the run around.  No client…

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Oh no! Not another insurance company exam.

The workers’ compensation insurance company will ask that you be examined during an independent medical examination (IME) any time you have a work injury.  The independent medical examination is really a defense medical examination.  The doctor can ask you questions, have you complete an information sheet or questionnaire, and of course perform a physical examination.  The exam is not for treatment purposes and no doctor – patient relationship is established. So why do you have…

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Is my Injury work related?

Philadelphia work injury attorneys at PearsonKoutcher, LLP explain how injuries that occur outside of a job site are considered work related. One of the key elements for an injured worker to prove when pursuing a claim for workers compensation benefits is that the accident resulting in an injury occurred while in the “course and scope of employment”. In general, an employee must prove that they were injured when actually engaged in furthering the employer’s business…

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Timeline: How Long will my workers’ compensation case take?

The most common question from clients is how long their Workers’ Compensation case will take.  To answer this question, it is important to understand the claim process.  If your claim has been denied, or the insurance company simply has not acted on your claim, a Claim Petition will need to be filed.  It is the injured workers burden of proof to establish all of the elements to support a claim, including the happening of an accident…

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Understanding Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Workers’ Compensation is a government-mandated program requiring employers to purchase insurance coverage to provide benefits, including lost wages and medical care costs, to employees who become ill or injured on the job. In exchange, employers cannot be sued by their injured workers in personal injury lawsuits.  Each state has its own laws and programs for Workers’ Compensation.  The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act governs the program in our state. The purpose of the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation…

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Pennsylvania Supreme Court Rules on Sufficient Notice of Injuries

After mixed results in the lower courts, Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court has ruled that an injured worker did adequately notify her employer of her work-related injuries, and she is thus entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits.  As an employee of Gentex Corp. since 1960, Anne Marie Morack inspected helmets made for the Air Force.  She experienced swelling in her hands beginning in 2003, and by January 2005, the pain had become so great that she informed a…

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Out-of-State Workers’ Compensation Claims for NFL Players

When you sustain a workplace injury, where to file your Workers’ Compensation claim may be the first issue you encounter.  You may live in one state but work in another.  Your employer may be based in the state in which you live but you may travel between several worksites in different states.  Your position may involve travel to out-of-state locations visiting vendors or clients. This is an issue faced regularly by professional athletes who travel to a new location every couple of days…

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New Legislation Shortens Duration of Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Workers’ Compensationis administered in each state individually.  The state legislatures have the authority to develop laws that govern how long benefits are paid and under which circumstances benefits can be terminated.  A growing number of states, in response to the economic downfall, are amending their Workers’ Compensation laws to limit the benefits received by injured workers.  More than ever, injured workers need diligent, knowledgeable Workers’ Compensation attorneys, like those lawyers of Pearson Koutcher, LLP, to…

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HSE’s New Online System for Reporting Injuries in the Workplace

An online system for reporting work-related injuries and illnesses covered under RIDDOR (the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases, and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995) will be the predominant reporting method beginning Sept. 12, 2011.  Employers reporting work-related injuries must use one of seven forms available on the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) website.  HSE’s Infoline telephone service will cease operation on Sept. 30, 2011.  However, fatal and major incidents and injuries in the workplace can still be…

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Workers Comp Definition of Workplace

What constitutes “on the job” is an issue that must be addressed in a Workers’ Compensation claim. In most cases, it is a minor issue because the workplace can be easily defined by the walls of a building or the punching of a time clock. In a  recent North Carolina case, it was not so simple. Workers Comp Definition of Workplace is an important part of all Work Comp Claims James Hunt, a North Carolina public school principal…

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Changes to Workers Compensation Laws Cut Treatment Benefits to Save Money

There is a current trend by state legislatures to amend Workers Compensation laws to limit or even eliminate certain benefits. The goal is to alleviate the financial burden the Workers’ Compensation program puts on already financially-strapped states. Changes in the laws of some states, such as North Carolina, function to shorten the duration of benefits.   Other changes to Workers Compensation laws, such as those recently in New York, may eliminate the type of treatments an injured worker may receive or may shorten the duration…

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Work Comp Disfigurement Benefits

The Workers’ Compensation act allows for disfigurement benefits for scaring or other markings on the head, neck or face caused by a work accident or a surgical procedure related to a work injury. For instance, if you get cut on the face while working, you may be entitled to disfigurement benefits. Also, if you have surgery which leaves a scar, such as neck surgery, you have a claim for disfigurement benefits. At Pearson Koutcher Law…

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