Are there any additional benefits available to injured government employees?

There are a number of state statutes and local ordinances which impose upon governmental entities the obligations to pay benefits to employees who have suffered work injuries. The two most commonly invoked statutes are the Heart and Lung Act and Act 534. Under both the Heart and Lung Act and Act 534, the injured employee is paid a full salary.

The Heart and Lung Act applies to all state police and enforcement officers; investigators of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board; enforcement officers and investigators of the Pennsylvania Board of Parole; members of the Delaware River Port Authority; and police, firefighters, or park guards of any county, city, borough, town, or township injured in the performance of duties. If you qualify, these benefits are available for any temporary incapacity. Benefits are not available if you are permanently incapacitated.

Act 534 covers employees of a state penal or correction institution under the Department of Corrections and employees of a state mental hospital or youth development center under the Department of Public Welfare.

The Act covers injuries that occur during employment by an act of any person confined in such an institution, or by any person who has been committed to an institution by any Court of the Commonwealth, or pursuant to any provision of the Mental Health Act. With respect to any employee of the County Board of Assistance, the injuries are covered if they result from the Act of an applicant or recipient of public assistance. Under Act 534, the injured employee is entitled to receive benefits until he or she returns as an employee of the respective department or institution at a salary equal to that earned at the time of the injury. Act 534 benefits are also available for the widow or widower and minor dependents of any employee who dies within one year as a result of an injury.