Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in PA: A Step-by-Step Guide

Filing a Worker’s Compensation claim in Philadelphia and Allentown involves several steps and adhering to specific timelines, including the statute of limitations. The process is designed to ensure that injured workers receive the necessary medical treatment and compensation for lost wages due to work-related injuries or illnesses. 

While streamlined, the process can still be confusing, especially if you’re a first-time filer. Therefore, whether you’re filing for a back or neck injury, attorneys in Allentown should always be consulted for guidance to ensure timely action that will result in fair compensation.

How to File a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Pennsylvania?

The filing process in Pennsylvania involves several specific steps, as follows:

How to File a Workers' Compensation Claim in Pennsylvania
  1. Report the Injury: An injured worker must report their injury or illness to their employer or supervisor as soon as possible. Pennsylvania law requires that this report be made within 120 days of the injury. However, to ensure the best chance of receiving benefits, reporting immediately is advisable.
  2. Employer’s Responsibility: Upon receiving notification of the injury, the employer is required to report it to their Worker’s Compensation insurance carrier. The employer should also provide the injured worker with a form to seek medical treatment if necessary.
  3. Medical Treatment: Initially, the injured worker may be required to see a doctor from a list provided by the employer or their insurance carrier for the first 90 days after the injury. After this period, the worker can choose their doctor.
  4. Claim Filing by the Insurance Company: The insurance company will file a First Report of Injury with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Worker’s Compensation. The insurer will then investigate the claim to decide on approving or denying the compensation.
  5. Receiving a Decision: The insurance company must issue a decision within 21 days of being notified of the injury. If the claim is approved, benefits will start to be paid. If the claim is denied, the worker has the right to appeal.

Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations for filing a claim petition for Worker’s Compensation benefits in Pennsylvania is three years from the date of the injury. This means if the insurance company denies the claim, or if certain benefits are disputed, the injured worker has up to three years to file a formal claim petition.

Duration of Total Temporary Disability (TTD) Benefits

In Pennsylvania, there is no specific maximum time limit for collecting TTD benefits. An injured worker can continue to receive these benefits as long as they are considered totally disabled and unable to work. However, the employer or their insurance carrier can request an Impairment Rating Evaluation (IRE), as per Act 57 of 1996, after the worker has received 104 weeks of total disability benefits to assess if the worker is at least 50% impaired according to the American Medical Association (AMA) guidelines, which could potentially change the status of benefits.

Average Whole-Person Impairment & Settlements


Specific statistics on the average whole-person impairment for injured workers in Pennsylvania are not typically published as they vary widely depending on the individual case, type of injury, and severity.

Similarly, average settlement amounts for Worker’s Compensation cases in Pennsylvania can vary significantly. Settlements depend on numerous factors, including:

  • The severity of the injury;
  • Worker’s age;
  • Wage rate;
  • Medical expenses;
  • Extent of disability.

As such, there is no one “average” settlement figure that accurately represents all cases. Settlements can range from a few thousand dollars for minor injuries to substantial six-figure amounts for severe or permanent disabilities.

Where to find assertive back & neck injury attorneys near me in Allentown?

Just a few blocks away from the PPL Center Arena, in the very heart of Hamilton District, you can find some of the finest work injury lawyers in all of Allentown – Liberty Bell. Our specialists have extensive experience and can provide advice tailored to your specific situation helping you navigate the intricacies of the claims process with the utmost ease. Contact us today and let us advocate for your rights to ensure you receive the maximum compensation you deserve.