Monday, November 10, 2003

Commonwealth's Contributions to PSERS Are Not Offset From W.C. Benefits

In Pittsburgh Board of Education v. WCAB (Dancho) the issue was offset for pension contributions of the Commonwealth to the Public School Employees Retirement System. The WCJ accepted the argument of the Employer School District that it was an agent of the Commonwealth, therefore the pension offset should be in the amount of both the School District's and the Commonwealth's contributions to the Claimant's pension. The Board reversed and the Commonwealth Court affirmed, noting that the Commonwealth is not and could not be the "employer liable for the payment of compensation," the party entitled to an offset for its pension contributions under Section 204(a). The Court did not address the effect of the policy in place since June 30, 1995 whereby the school district makes the contribution of the school district and the Commonwealth and is then reimbursed for the Commonwealth's share. The Court stated this issue was not raised below.

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