For people who have been injured on the job, money and lost wages are major stressors. Thankfully, there are many systems in place to supplement the lost income and provide funds for injury recovery. Through workers compensation law, you are able to file a claim through your employer, and depending on the severity of your injuries, you will receive a certain amount of financial support. There are many different designations within workers comp claims, and you may notice that you get labeled with certain terms as you progress through the required exams and assessments. Based on the results of these things, you can be classified as either temporarily or permanently disabled.
Only a portion of workplace injuries result in permanent, total disability, and this designation may be difficult to obtain. Things like traumatic brain injury, paralysis, loss of limbs, and other catastrophic injury may fall into this category. Essentially, if you are awarded permanent disability status, it means that you are never expected to make a recovery from your injuries. This will be verified by medical professionals, and possibly career placement specialists as well. This designation gives you certain benefits that are guaranteed by governmental programs, although your level of reimbursement (calculated from your salary before the incident) will be lower with permanent than with temporary disability. However, it lasts much longer.
Many workers comp cases involve people that have been injured, but are expected to make enough of a recovery to continue work after some time. The varying levels of temporary disability can be confusing, but a qualified workers comp attorney in Southern California will be able to help you make sense of it. Temporary disability benefits are paid while you are recovering from injury or illness, and may last up to two years in most states. This is typically at a rate of ⅔ your normal wages. At the point that your recovery has plateaued, and you are not expected to make any more significant improvement, your time of temporary disability will end. You may still be able to ask for certain accommodations at work, or seek modified work duties during and after this period, but only your lawyer may know for sure.
If your jobsite injury resulted in a permanent injury, which you will have for the rest of your life, you will likely qualify for permanent disability benefits. If not, you will likely be categorized in one of the sections of temporary disability (short and/or long-term, partial or total), and will have to make a transition back into full-time work. Since there are many gray areas in workers comp cases and disability classifications, it’s important to speak with an experienced attorney. Reach out to us at Jackson & Jackson Law today and ask for your free consultation!