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Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Laws

Workers compensation law, rules and policy information for the State of Pennsylvania

State:  Pennsylvania

Authority/Rating Bureau:  A non-NCCI state. The rating authority is somewhat unique in that Pennsylvania shares with Delaware a non-NCCI classification system. The rating bureau is the Pennsylvania Compensation Rating Bureau and can be contacted at:

Pennsylvania Compensation Rating Bureau
United Plaza Building - Suite 1500
30 South 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-4007

Compulsory:  Yes

Private Insurance:  Allowed

Self-Insurance:  Allowed

State Fund:  A competitive state fund. Operated by the State Workers Insurance Fund (SWIF.) Contact them at:

State Workers' Insurance Fund
100 Lackawanna Avenue
P.O. Box 5100
Scranton, PA 18505-5100
(570) 963-4635

Assigned Risk:  Administered by the State Workers Insurance Fund to contact see state fund above.

Numerical Exceptions:  None, see special notes for additional information.

Individual Waivers Allowed:  No

Small Deductible Program:
  • Allowed:  Yes - Mandatory that insurance carriers make available
  • Deductible Range:  $1,000; $5,000 ;$10,000
  • Type:  Medical and Death Benefits
  • Effect on Experience Rating:  Unknown
  • Available In:  Unknown
  • Special Note:  Established under Act 44 of 1993. Pennsylvania Insurance Department has established the three deductible levels shown above. Insurance carriers may offer different deductibles and premium credit upon approval of the insurance department.
  • For More Information About How Deductible Programs Work

Sole Proprietor:  Excluded from coverage. Effective 8-29-11 can elect to be included in coverage. If included the rating payroll is an annual minimum of $23,400 and maximum of $111,800 as of 4-1-2012, $28,600 / $114,400 as of 4-1-2013, $33,800 / $119,600 as of 4-1-2014.

Partners:  Excluded from coverage. Effective 8-29-11 can elect to be included in coverage. If included the rating payroll is an annual minimum of $23,400 and maximum of $111,800 as of 4-1-2012, $28,600 / $114,400 as of 4-1-2013, $33,800 / $119,600 as of 4-1-2014.

Corporate Officers:  Included in coverage/may elect to be exempt. When included the rating payroll is banded between a minimum of $20,800 and a maximum of $109,200 as of 4-1-10, $23,400 / $111,800 as of 4-1-2012, $28,600 / $114,400 as of 4-1-2013, $33,800 / $119,600 as of 4-1-2014.

LLC Members:  Excluded from coverage - Section 301(a) of the Workers Compensation Act (Act), 77 P.S. Section 431, only requires employers to maintain workers compensation coverage on their employees. Section 104 of the Act, 77 P.S. Section 22, states that the "employee" as used in the Act is synonymous with servant and includes "natural persons who perform services for another for a valuable consideration, exclusive of persons whose employment is casual in character and not in the regular course of the business of the employer.." To the extent that LLCs have no employees, i.e., its only workers are members, it has no employees and no workers compensation liability. However, should a member withdraw from the LLC and become an employee or the business adds a part-time or a full-time employee, it would then be required to insure its workers compensation liability.

Election or Rejection of Coverage Forms:

Other Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Forms:  Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Forms. This link will take you to the Pennsylvania State Website forms page for access to other state workers compensation forms. Check here for the most current 509 and 513 forms.

Note About Forms:  Be sure to contact your insurance company for information about additional forms they may use for exclusion or inclusion of coverage.

Contractors:  Consideration has been given to questions which have arisen regarding the classification procedure for a subcontractor who performs a single type of work on a contracting project or job. This situation is illustrated by Code 603, Sewer Construction, where portions of the work such as excavation may be subcontracted.

Consistent with the classification treatment which has been generally observed, it has been ruled that such subcontracted work shall be classified on the basis of the classification describing the particular type of work involved. Thus, the subcontractor who only performs excavation work in connection with the construction of a sewer would be classified as Code 609, Excavation, rather than as Code 603, Sewer Construction.

The ruling in connection with concrete construction has been continued. This requires that all operations including making and erecting forms, placing reinforcing steel and stripping forms, when done by subcontractors, shall be assigned to the appropriate concrete construction classification.

These rulings apply only to insured subcontractors. Uninsured subcontractors, covered under the principal contractor’s policy, will continue to be classified on the basis of the classifications which would apply if the work were performed by the principal’s own employees.

Special Notes:  Workers compensation is compulsory as to all employments. Here are the exceptions:
  • Individual proprietors
  • Partners of a partnership (including members of a Limited Liability Company (LLC).
  • Elected officers of the Commonwealth or any of its political subdivisions.
  • An executive officer of a for profit corporation or an executive officer of a nonprofit corporation who serves voluntarily and without remuneration may, however, elect not to be an “employee” of the corporation. For the purposes of this exclusion, an executive officer of a for-profit corporation is an individual who has either an ownership interest in a Subchapter S corporation as defined by the Act of March 4, 1971 (P.L. 6, No. 2) known as the “Tax Reform Code of 1971,” or an interest of at least five percent in a Subchapter C corporation as defined by the Tax Reform Code of 1971.
  • Any person who is a licensed real estate salesperson or an associate real estate broker affiliated with a licensed real estate broker or a licensed insurance agent affiliated with a licensed insurance agency, under a written agreement, remunerated on a commission only basis and who qualifies as an independent contractor for State tax purposes or for Federal tax purposes under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (Public Law 99-514, 26 U.S.C. § 1 Et Seq.).
  • Domestic or casual labor.
  • Outworker (a person to whom articles are given for cleaning, repair, etc. at home).
  • Farmer with one employee who works less than 30 days a year or earns less than $1,200 a year. A spouse or a child of the farmer employer under eighteen years of age shall not be deemed an employee unless the services of such spouse or child are engaged by the farmer employer under an express written contract of hire which is filed with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.
  • Elective for members of certain religious sects whose tenets prohibit benefits from insurance, provided the sect makes provisions for its members.

Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Subrogation:  State statute 77 PS 671 (section 319) is the Pennsylvania statute that addresses workers compensation subrogation for this state. Statute 77 PS 671 is actually found in the Pennsylvania workers compensation act table of contents under Article II, Damages by Action at Law; Use the link below to access this act. Once there you will have to scroll down to section 319.

Pennsylvania Statute Of Subrogation

Regulated By: 

Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry
Room 1700
7th and Forster Streets
Harrisburg, PA 17120
(717) 787-5279

Workers Compensation Statute: 

Workers Compensation Statute of Pennsylvania

Didn't find what you're looking for? Search here for more about Pennsylvania rules: 

Information on this page is provided only as a reference. While we strive to mantain accurate information on this site please realize workers compensation laws are complicated and subject to change at any time. No warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of this information is provided or to be implied. You must verify this data before use with the individual governing authority for this state. If you need help with a workers compensation problem or have a specific situation or question please contact our office. Otherwise please consult your states governing authority or an attorney in your state of residency for assistance.

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