We are in the midst of football season. As a Penn State and Eagles fan, I always look forward to this time of year. My children know that on Saturdays and Sundays, the TV is under my control. As I have been watching the games, I have noticed two things: The Eagles are not all that good so far and it seems like every play results in a penalty flag. So I thought about some issues (flags) we see in Workers’ Compensation. Yes I know that this is an odd topic to think about during a football game, but have you seen that Eagles offense? (I wrote this before the Giant’s game). I thought what better time than during football season to present a series on Workers’ Compensation flags.
The Notice of Temporary Compensation Payable is a document used often following a work injury. The NTCP (or TNCP as it is commonly called) allows the employer to initiate payments (medical and/or indemnity) for a period not exceeding 90 days without prejudice and without admitting liability where there is uncertainty regarding compensability or extent of liability. An issue can arise when the TNCP is revoked and a Denial issued. The Act allows for the stoppage of benefits under a TNCP within the 90-day period. However, there are two important steps to follow: a Notice Stopping Temporary Compensation (LIBC 502) and a Notice of Denial (LIBC 496) must be filed within 5 days of the last payment of benefits. It is crucial that the Stopping and Denial are not issued during or before the last payment of indemnity. In that situation, the Stopping and Denial may be considered untimely and invalid, thus resulting in a full acceptance of the claim. Therefore, be sure when utilizing the TNCP that the 90-day timeframe is on diary. In the event a decision is made to revoke the TNCP, be sure that the Stopping and Denial are issued within 5 days of the last payment. By following these procedures, the Claimant will be required to file a Claim Petition and meet his burden of proof on the claim petition.
Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the next Penalty Flag.