To find out how much you will receive in workers compensation benefits, you have to know the benefits you are entitled to under Hyannis, MA workers compensation laws and the calculations used to determine the amount.
You are entitled to four types of benefits:
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Payment of medical bills
- Permanent impairment benefits
- Weekly compensation
This is basically getting trained for a job. If your injuries prevent you from going back to your old job, your workers compensation insurer will be required to pay for your retraining to start a new job.
Payment of Medical Bills
You are entitled to have all your current and future medical bills paid. Most of the time, workers compensation insurers and employees clash because insurers may feel treatment has been going on for too long or the treatment being offered is not necessary or acceptable in the medical community. If this is the case, the insurance company may refuse to pay for the treatment. This will force you to call the state workers compensation agency to try and get the treatment paid for.
You might also be reimbursed for any transportation costs you incurred while travelling to and from medical appointments including parking, tolls and mileage.
Permanent Impairment Benefits
If you are diagnosed with a permanent impairment based on American Medical Association guidelines, then you are entitled to permanent impairment benefits.
Permanent impairment is defined as a restriction or limitation of use of motion in a body part. So let’s say your foot was injured and as a result you lost all strength and flexibility in that foot. A doctor can assess you and conclude that you have a 30% permanent impairment in that hand. In Hyannis MA, the workers compensation law might require the insurer to pay $100, 000 for complete loss of use of a leg.
In such a case, the amount of compensation you would be entitled to is $30, 000. That is 30% X $100, 000.
Weekly Compensation Benefits
If the accident caused an injury that rendered you disabled, you are entitled to receive weekly compensation benefits. You can receive four different types of disability benefits. You will need to talk to your lawyer to find out which one you are entitled to by law.
- Permanent partial disability
- Permanent total disability
- Temporary partial disability
- Temporary total disability
Total vs. Partial Disability
Total disability means you can’t work any type of job because you are completely disabled. Partial disability means you can still work even if you’ll be performing light duties.
Temporary vs. Permanent Disability
Temporary disability means you are on your way to recovery and you are expected to get better. Permanent disability means your condition has already stabilized but you are not expected to get any better.
How Much are Weekly Benefits?
If you are suffering from a partial disability, your benefits will be calculated differently because it’s assumed you’re able to work even if it is a light job or a partial one. Your benefits will be calculated by reducing your average weekly wage by your current earning capacity. So if your weekly wage before you were injured was $500, your current earning capacity would be $250. In Massachusetts, total disability is 60% of your average weekly wages so your partial disability rate would be:
60% X (1, 000 – 500) = $300.
For total disability, you will receive 2/3 of your average weekly wage. Most states have however capped the maximum weekly benefit at approximately $1000 per week regardless of what your average weekly wage is so you need to talk to your Hyannis workers compensation lawyer to find out more information.
How Long Can You Receive Weekly Compensation Benefits?
Most states limit the length of time you can receive temporary benefits, usually between 3-7 years. There is no time limit for permanent disability benefits.
You Won’t Receive Benefits for Pain and Suffering
Workers compensation laws are just income protection laws meaning you will only receive benefits because you are unable to work due to your work related injury. If your pain prevents you from going to work, you will receive weekly compensation benefits but you won’t receive additional benefits.