COVID-19 Update on Unemployment and Workers’ Compensation Benefits (via NFIB)

March 20, 2020

Important Note: This content was originally written and published by the NFIB

During the difficult decision-making made necessary by recent events, NFIB members have requested guidance on whether their employees may qualify for assistance if businesses are forced to close temporarily, reduce employees’ hours, or ask workers to stay home.

Yesterday, the state Department of Labor and Industry provided a statement on eligibility for unemployment and workers’ compensation for workers in Pennsylvania who are impacted by COVID-19 (

Employees may be eligible for unemployment compensation if:

  • Their employer temporarily closes or goes out of business because of COVID-19;
  • Their employer reduces their hours because of COVID-19;
  • The employee has been told not to work because the employer feels they might get or spread COVID-19; or
  • The employee is subject to quarantine or self-isolation or lives/works in a county under government-recommended mitigation efforts. (Note: this applies statewide as of March 17).

Employees may apply online (

Employees who may be been exposed to COVID-19 in a workplace may be eligible for workers’ compensation. As with typical claims, employees must file a “disease-as-injury” WC claim with their employer and provide medical evidence that they were exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace.

For the most accurate and up-to-date information on COVID-19 in Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s dedicated coronavirus webpage (, which is updated daily.


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