Like with many aspects of law, worker’s compensation is filled with complicated language and insider jargon. When you’re an employee who has been hurt on the job, it can be confusing and frustrating, just trying to look through paperwork or schedule your evaluations. While it’s valuable to have a qualified California worker’s comp attorney to help with your case, it’s also a great idea to take the time to familiarize yourself with some of the lingo. This will empower you to stay on top of your rights and responsibilities, and better understand the details of your case.
Here are eight worker’s comp terms that you should know:
This is a very important time to remember- your date of injury (DOI), sometimes called date of accident (DOA). It’s critical that this date is recorded correctly, to track your benefits and medical recovery.
When you see a doctor for your official medical visit, this is called the independent medical examination (IME).
Determining the pay rate for disability leave or worker’s comp benefits is sometimes based on your average weekly wage (AWW). This is typically calculated by dividing your yearly salary by 52.
When being assessed for your capabilities following your injury, you will be given a numerical impairment rating (IR), sometimes called a physical impairment rating (PIR).
As your level of disability is determined, you may receive a categorization whether you are totally or partially disabled, and for how long. When it comes to serious injury resulting in total disability, you may see a designation of permanent total disability (PTD), or temporary total disability (TTD).
Like with total disability, partial disability is also broken down into two ratings based on time periods. Permanent partial disability (PPD) and temporary partial disability (TPD) are the legal categories here.
Working with your approved medical provider, you will be given a prognosis, or an estimated level of recovery that you will reach, despite continued treatment. This is called maximum medical improvement (MMI), and often determines your benefit cut-off date.
Medical and health evaluators are asked to rate injured workers on many different scales, in something known as functional capacity evaluation (FCE). This results in a report on your work capabilities and restrictions.
If you need help understanding your worker’s compensation case, reach out to us at Jackson & Jackson today for your free consultation!