Representing Uninsured Employers in Pennsylvania

If you are facing a Workers’ Compensation claim from an employee, the attorneys at Schaff & Young are here to help. Whether you had workers’ compensation insurance at the time of the employee’s injury or even if you were uninsured, our knowledgeable attorneys will guide you through every step of the Workers’ Compensation system and help you with any other issues that may arise with the Commonwealth, protecting your interests every step of the way.

At Schaff & Young, our attorneys are devoted to defending workers compensation claims on behalf of employers, businesses, insurance companies, third party administrators and self-insureds. With nearly 50 years of combined legal experience representing workers' compensation defendants, Barbara Young, Michael Schaff, and the attorneys and staff at Schaff & Young, P.C., understand clients’ needs and work hand-in-hand with our clients to insure that their workers’ compensation claims are vigorously defended using innovative methods and creative litigation strategies.

Failing to carry workers compensation insurance can be a big problem for employers whose employees are injured on the job. Employers who violate the Workers’ Compensation Act by failing to have workers’ compensation insurance can face fines and/or imprisonment. Under Section 305(b) of the Workers’ Compensation Act, 77 P.S. §§ 501, failing to maintain workers’ compensation insurance is a third degree misdemeanor, or a third degree felony for intentional violations. If you do not have workers’ compensation insurance and an employee is claiming you owe them benefits, the attorneys at Schaff & Young are here to help.

When a Claimant files a workers’ compensation claim against an uninsured employer, the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation will assign an attorney to represent the Uninsured Employers Guaranty Fund. Many uninsured employers believe that these attorneys represent their interests, but that is not entirely true. These attorneys represent the Fund’s interest, and for reasons stated below, the interests of the Fund and the uninsured employer are far from identical. When an uninsured employer does not get separate representation, they are in many ways unrepresented in the workers’ compensation litigation. Schaff and Young does not represent the Fund, and Michael Schaff is one of a very few workers’ compensation attorneys in the Philadelphia area with the level of expertise, the willingness to handle, and the ability to successfully defend and/or reasonably resolve claims on behalf of uninsured employers, individually.

Our attorneys will make sure the individual claiming workers’ compensation was an employee rather than an independent contractor. Workers’ compensation insurance is only required for employees. Employers who work solely with independent contractors are not required to maintain workers’ compensation insurance. The difference between an employee and an independent contractor is not always clear, but the attorneys at Schaff & Young will fight vigorously on your behalf to ensure that you are not held responsible for paying an improper claim.

The attorneys at Schaff & Young will also help identify issues before they arise to help keep litigation costs as low as possible. In addition, our attorneys know that there are additional requirements in cases where an employer is uninsured. The Uninsured Employers Guaranty Fund (UEGF) is a fund created by statute, 77 P.S. §§ 2701–2708, which pays claims on behalf of employers that don’t have workers’ compensation insurance. While employees sometimes file petitions against the UEGF themselves, other times employers are responsible for identifying the UEGF as another defendant by filing a joinder petition. Our attorneys make sure that all petitions are properly filed with the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.

Uninsured employers face other issues, as well. The UEGF has a right to reimbursement, which means that it can attempt to collect from you the entire amount of benefits it paid to your employee. The attorneys at Schaff & Young will represent you in your dealings with the Bureau and will help you with these, and any other, issues that may arise.

Schaff & Young, P.C. is a boutique practice focusing primarily on defending workers' compensation, longshoreman and harbor workers' claims. As a result, our attorneys and staff understand our clients' concerns and create legal strategies that anticipate how cases will progress. This focus allows us to tailor our defenses to our clients' practical concerns and other limitations. Because of this client-focused approach to case management, the firm has tripled in size since its founding in April 2005.

How Can Schaff & Young Help You?

Our attorneys defend uninsured employers before Workers' Compensation Judges in Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania. We understand the often complicated language and procedures of workers’ compensation practice in Pennsylvania, and explain all of the deadlines, forms, procedures and other obstacles common in these cases. Because of our years of practice, we also know the unique procedures and demands of each Workers' Compensation Judge, and prepare our cases to comply with every judge's requirements. Likewise, Workers' Compensation Judges know that our lawyers are always well-prepared to address all of the legal issues in an efficient and professional manner.

If you would like to learn how the Schaff & Young difference can help you and your company defend against workers' compensation, longshoreman and harbor workers' claims, please contact Barbara Young or Michael Schaff at (215) 988-0090 or send us an email to info@schaffyoung.com. We look forward to working with you.