Workers’ Comp Benefits Lawyer Serving Orange County, FL
WAGE REPLACEMENT/INDEMNITY BENEFITS
Workers’ compensation may replace your lost wages for a specified period of time if your injury or illness prevents you from returning to work. The amount you are eligible to receive is dependent on the nature and severity of your injury as well as how long you will be out of work.
The two most common types of lost wage benefits that an injured employee may receive are Temporary Total Disability (“TTD”) and Temporary Partial Disability (“TPD”) benefits.
TEMPORARY TOTAL DISABILITY (TDD) BENEFITS
If you expect to return to work but need some time off to recover, you would be eligible for:
- Temporary Total Disability (TTD) benefits.
- TTD benefits are 66 ⅔ of your pre-injury average weekly wage paid bi-weekly. The maximum TTD benefit you can receive in 2019 in Florida is $939.
- If your injury is considered severe (amputation, paralysis, blindness), you would receive a higher benefit equal to 80% of your regular wages which will be paid up to six months after the accident.
- TTD benefits don’t start until after you’ve missed seven days of work. If you end up being out of work for more than 21 days, you may be reimbursed for the first week of lost wages.
- TTD benefits can be collected for up to 104 weeks or until you are medically cleared to return to work
TEMPORARY PARTIAL DISABILITY (TPD) BENEFITS
If you expect to return to work but in a limited or restricted capacity, you would be eligible for Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) benefits.
- TPD benefits would be 80% of the difference between what you were earning before the accident and your earning potential afterwards
- Payments stop after 104 weeks or until you are medically cleared to go back to work
PERMANENT IMPAIRMENT BENEFITS/PERMANENT PARTIAL DISABILITY
At some point in your recovery, your doctor will conclude that you’ve reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). This means that all available treatment has been completed and your condition is considered “stable” or as “good as it’s going to get.” In other words, no further medical treatment is likely to change or improve your condition.
When you’ve reached MMI, your doctor will assign a permanent impairment rating which is a measurement of the permanent damage done to your body as a result of the injury. The rating is designated as a percentage of the loss of the use or function of the injured body part. If you receive an impairment rating greater than 0%, you will receive impairment benefits paid at the rate of 75% of your temporary total disability rate. Your impairment rating also determines the number of weeks you will be paid benefits based on the Florida Uniform Permanent Impairment Rating Schedule:
- 2 weeks of checks for every percentage from 1-10%;
- 3 weeks of checks for every percentage from 11-15%;
- 4 weeks of checks for every percentage from 16-20%; and
- 6 weeks of checks for every percentage from 21% and up.
For example, if you are assigned a permanent impairment rating of 4%, you would get paid 8 weeks of benefits (2 weeks x 4% = 8)
Permanent Total Disability (PTD) benefits
If your injury is so severe that it has left you with a permanent impairment that prevents you from returning to the workforce, you may be able to claim permanent total disability benefits (PTD). PTD benefits are 66 ⅔ of your average weekly wage and may be paid out until you reach 75 years of age. Examples of a qualifying permanent disability include: spinal cord injury, paralysis, amputation, traumatic brain injury, hearing/speech/vision loss, and second or third degree burns.
If your workplace injury or illness prevents you from returning to your original line of work, you may be eligible for vocational counseling, job placement, job training/retraining services . To find out more about this program, you may contact the Department of Financial Services, Division of Workers’ Compensation, Bureau of Employee Assistance and Ombudsman Office (EAO) at (800) 342-1741.
If your loved one died as the result of a workplace injury or illness, you may be eligible for compensation for funeral expenses (up to $7,500), income replacement, and educational benefits (available for surviving spouse).