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Pennsylvania: Truck Driver’s State of Residence is Insufficient to Establish Jurisdiction Following Extraterritorial Injury

September 18, 2015 (1 min read)

A Pennsylvania appellate court held that a truck driver was not entitled to benefits in Pennsylvania for an extraterritorial injury because his employment was not principally localized in Pennsylvania where the driver and the employer entered into an agreement that clearly indicated that the driver’s employment was principally localized in Alabama, and the driver performed his duties in a number of states, including Pennsylvania, Alabama, and New Jersey—where the injury occurred, and where the driver was already receiving benefits under the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act. The court acknowledged the driver’s contention that he had always lived in Pennsylvania and that a majority of his driving for the employer took place in Pennsylvania. His contract of employment was executed in Alabama, however, and the driver’s employment contract clearly indicated that all workers’ compensation claims for on-the-job injuries were to be exclusively governed by the workers’ compensation laws of the State of Alabama. The agreement’s terms did not violate public policy. Had the injury occurred in Pennsylvania, the decision would have been different, indicated the court.

Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is the co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).

LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis 

See Watt v. Workers’ Comp. Appeal Bd. (Boyd Bros. Transp.), 2015 Pa. Commw. LEXIS 393 (Sept. 15, 2015)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 143.04

Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law.