Most employers in Pennsylvania are required to purchase workers’ compensation insurance to provide benefits to workers who are injured while on-the-job. However, not all employers are required to obtain workers’ compensation insurance.
Which employers are required to purchase workers’ comp insurance?
Pennsylvania employers that meet certain criteria must purchase workers’ compensation. Generally, having one or more part-time or full-time employees that could sustain a work-related injury or medical condition in Pennsylvania, outside Pennsylvania if employment is localized in Pennsylvania, or while under a contract made in Pennsylvania in certain circumstances, is enough to make workers comp mandatory. However, there are some exemptions including:
- Railroad workers, longshoremen, federal employees, and other employees covered by other workers’ compensation acts
- Domestic servants
- Sole proprietors
- Employees not working within the regular course of the employer’s business
- Agricultural workers hired to do less than 30 days of work and who earn less than $1,200/year from one employer.
- Employees who request an exemption based on religious beliefs or executive status in certain corporations
Employers often err in determining who is exempted
While these exemptions may seem straightforward, there are many employers that believe they fall under these exemptions but in fact, do not. Employers who fail to have workers’ compensation insurance were required may face civil and criminal penalties and will be liable for injured workers’ injuries. If you are an injured worker who has not received the benefits you are entitled to, a workers’ compensation attorney in your area can help.