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PA Workers’ Comp News Alert: Statewide Average Weekly Wage Set for 2020

Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Labor and Industry has announced the 2020 Statewide Average Weekly Wage. This figure serves as the basis for determining the maximum and minimum weekly Workers’ Compensation benefit rates in Pennsylvania. For 2020, the figure has increased 3% to $1081.00 from the 2019 average of $1049.00. This increase affects the weekly rates paid to workers who are injured on or after January 1, 2020.Under the PA WC Act, injured workers are entitled to indemnity wage-loss benefits equal to two-thirds of their weekly wage for a work-related injury, subject to minimums and maximums. The maximum weekly compensation rate for 2020 is $1081.00.  The second block represents the weekly compensation rate to be 66 2/3 percent of the employee’s average weekly wage if the average weekly wage falls between $1,621.50 and $810.76. The third block reflects a weekly compensation rate of $540.50 if the employee’s average weekly wage is between $810.75 and $600.56. The last block is 90 percent of the employee’s average weekly wage if his/her average weekly wage is $600.55 or less.

Zachary M. Rubinich is a partner in our Philadelphia office. He focuses his practice on the defense of insurance carriers, self-insured entities and third-party administrators against workers’ compensation claims in Pennsylvania. Based on his extensive experience, the Pennsylvania Bar Association Workers’ Compensation Law Section has certified him as Specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law. Zach has handled all aspects of litigation before workers’ compensation judges, the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board, the Commonwealth Court and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.  He routinely counsels employers, insurance carriers and third party administrators on claims management, workplace safety, return-to-work programs, employment practices and risk management. Zach has been appointed to the following American Bar Association Tort Trial and Insurance Practice (TIPS) leadership positions: Vice-Chair of the Litigation and Trial Practice Committee; Vice-Chair of the Appellate Advocacy Committee; member of the Ethics and Professionalism Standing Committee; and member of the CLE Board Committee. These appointments became effective in September 2019. He is the Past Chair of the American Bar Association’s Tort Trial and Insurance Practice (TIPS) Workers’ Compensation and Employers’ Liability Law Committee from 2018-2019. He served as Vice-Chair of this committee for 2015-2016, 2016-2017 and 2017-2018. In addition, Zach served as Vice-Chair of the 2017-2018 American Bar Association Standing Committee for Diversity and Inclusion. Zach has been rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell for the eighth consecutive year in 2020. He has been selected as a 2019 Pennsylvania Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers. He was selected as a Pennsylvania Rising Star by Super Lawyers from 2010 to 2014. Zach has recently been selected as an International Advisory Experts (IAE) Award recipient in 2019 for his accomplishments as a workers’ compensation attorney in Pennsylvania. He has been selected as a Fellow of the College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Class of 2020. The College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers was established to honor attorneys who have distinguished themselves in their practice in the field of workers’ compensation.

Zach can be reached directly at: (215) 575-4340 • zrubinich@rawle.com

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