Under certain circumstances, an employer may reduce or modify an employee’s workers’ compensation benefits. Pennsylvania law allows an employer or insurer to request a modification or suspension of an injured employee’s wage-loss benefits if the employee returns to work, whether this return is to a new workplace or a former place of employment in a different position.
Prior to the Protz decisions, an employer or insurance company would seek to modify an employee’s benefits upon a change in disability status by requesting an impairment rating evaluation (IRE) within 60 days of the 104-week anniversary of the commencement of the employee’s total disability benefits.
If the results showed that the employee has an impairment rating of less than 50 percent based on the American Medical Association’s Guidelines, the employee’s status change to a partial disability and he receives benefits for a maximum of 500 weeks. However, Protz declared the IRE section of the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act was unconstitutional as an improper delegation of legislative authority, thus ending the use of this process. Instead, a vocational expert will likely have to make this determination in the future. Right now, much is uncertain after the Protz decisions.
Dealing with a work-related injury may be a substantial hardship. For 113 years, Powell Law has represented all types of workers in workers’ compensation cases. The attorneys and staff of Powell Law are experienced in helping injured workers cope with their situation and look forward, rather than backward, to a better life.
If you have applied for workers’ compensation benefits and have any questions about your claim and any action that may affect the success of your application for benefits, contact Powell Law today. Since James Powell, Sr., founded Powell Law in 1906, our attorneys have represented all types of workers in workers’ compensation cases. Our decades of experience make us the clear choice for representation in workers’ compensation cases in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and surrounding areas. We effectively help our clients throughout the entire workers’ compensation claims process. Consult an experienced Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney. Contact Powell Law at (570) 961-0777. The consultation is FREE!