How much will you get from your workers’ compensation settlement? – It is the most common question asked about the process, and for good reason. Money is important. You have bills you need to pay, a family you need to take care of, and your injury has prevented that. Unfortunately, while a popular question, it is not one that is so easily answered.
An injured employee is entitled to four different kinds of benefits:
- weekly compensation
- permanent impairment benefits
- payment of medical bills, and
- vocational rehabilitation.
Settlement in Workers’ Compensation is Not Guaranteed
The first issue is that many workers’ come to expect a “settlement” in workers’ compensation as something that is guaranteed. It is important to remember that a settlement is two parties settling on a disagreed issue, and that very well might not happen on your case.
For example, if you break your arm at work and need surgery to fix it that takes you off work for three weeks, everything could go very smoothly. The workers’ compensation system could come back and pay you the set amount for that time off work and cover the surgery as well as your related medical bills. You return to work at your previous wage and the case is closed. The settlement in a workers’ compensation only comes if there were disputed issues.
Factors That Affect Workers’ Compensation Settlement Amounts
While you may or may not be getting a settlement, you still want to know how much you are getting from the workers’ compensation system. Typically, you won’t come out at a profit, but your injury costs should be covered. There are a number of factors that can help you calculate how much your will receive from workers’ compensation, however.
An injured employee can have 4 types of disability benefits which include:
- temporary total disability
- temporary partial disability
- permanent total disability, or
- permanent partial disability.
Average Weekly Wage
The first calculation of your workers’ compensation claim will be your average weekly wage, or how much you make on the average week. Wage loss benefits are generally paid at the rate of 2/3 of this number.
How Long Have You Been Paid?
While you are disputing your workers’ compensation case and negotiating your settlement, you may still be receiving s your Temporary Total Disability or Temporary Partial Disability, but these have a maximum number of weeks you will be paid. Your injury may not reach that maximum, but the amount you have already been paid will come out of your settlement amount.
Severity of Injury and Work Restrictions
Obviously if you suffered a horrific work injury that will not allow you to return to your job, that will be costly to cover. A settlement will cover a high wage loss benefit for many months and you may even be covered for vocational training. This raises the settlement amount quite a bit.
How Strong is Your Claim?
Workers’ compensation comes from disputes. As such, your claim needs to have a certain amount of strength to even bring the insurance company to the table. If you have a claim with strong medical evidence, you are in a better settlement position. Yet, if you have a weak claim, the insurance company may just let it go to a court hearing without a settlement offer since if they win, they won’t have to pay you.
Contact Our Office Today To Speak To An Mankato Attorney
It is possible that if you get hurt at work, your workers’ compensation claim will go smoothly. However, if your workers’ compensation claim gets complicated or you find that items are getting disputed, you will want to contact a workers’ compensation attorney. They can help you work out any issues as well as help you work up an estimate on how much your will receive from a settlement or otherwise.
If you are in the Mankato area and you need help navigating the workers’ compensation system, contact us today so Harvey & Carpenter, Attorneys at Law can get to work helping you.