Pennsylvania store manager granted workers’ comp benefits after robbery
A liquor store manager in Pennsylvania will finally receive workers’ compensation benefits after a robbery occurred at his place of employment.
In 2008, a liquor store manager in Pennsylvania was robbed at gun point and then duct-taped to a chair while he was at work. Since this work-related accident, the man was unable to go back to work and began collecting Social Security disability benefits because he developed a post-traumatic stress disorder. Nearly seven years later, the man will finally be able to receive workers' compensation benefits retroactively for the robbery.
Why benefits were originally denied
Although the man was granted workers' compensation benefits in 2009, in September 2011, the Commonwealth Court put an end to the compensation, issuing a ruling that found that robberies are considered a "normal working condition" for liquor stores. After this decision was made, the store manager appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. During this process, the Supreme Court issued a decision on another case that impacted the outcome of the store manger's case.
In this other case, a law enforcement official was severely traumatized after a woman, dressed in black, ran out in front of his vehicle and committed suicide. Although the state police argued that dealing with these types of situations is a normal part of working in law enforcement, the court ruled in favor of the law enforcement official and stated that workers' compensation officials should pay attention to the unique circumstances surrounding each individual claim.
As a result, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decided that while robberies may be common in liquor stores, the former store manager should not be denied benefits. However, the Liquor Control Board can still appeal this decision and has a 60-day period to do so.
Eligibility requirements in Pennsylvania
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry, those who are injured at work may be entitled to receive workers' compensation benefits if the duties of their employment caused them to sustain an injury or develop an illness or disease. However, employees may become ineligible to receive these benefits if the injury was self-inflicted, caused by the illegal use of drugs or if the accident occurred because a law was violated. Employees who pass away or incur an injury at work may also not be able to receive benefits if the accident was caused by intoxication.
Even if an accident is work-related, employees in Pennsylvania may have their claim to receive workers' compensation benefits denied. If you were injured at work and your claim to benefits was not upheld, speak with an attorney in your area to assert your legal rights to fair and proper compensation.