Lawyer explains of the process of using a Michigan workers’ comp settlement calculator to calculate average weekly wage and estimate a lump sum cash payment amount.
Many of the individuals who contact our office want to know about settlement amounts. Our job as lawyers is to explain their legal rights and help them make an informed decision. Settlement is a good option because it allows people to complete medical treatment and vocational rehabilitation on their own terms. But how much should be paid? There is no magic number that a person can expect to receive. Use our Michigan workers’ comp settlement calculator to estimate what could be paid.
A settlement allows a disabled employee to give up their benefits in exchange for a lump sum cash payment. This money can be used for medical treatment, education, vocational rehabilitation, starting a business, paying off debt, or retirement. Settlement money is income tax free.
Statistics published by the Workers’ Disability Compensation Agency show the average settlement in 2019 was just $58,641.58. Most people are shocked to learn this amount because it does not seem like much money. This is especially true for someone who needs permanent work restrictions and lifetime medical care.
Insurance companies make settlement offers based upon what they believe must be paid in the future. This includes money for lost wages, medical treatment, and vocational rehabilitation. They do not overpay and will try to save money if they can get away with it. For this reason, it is a good idea to speak with an lawyer and use their Michigan workers’ comp settlement calculator to ensure you are getting the maximum amount for your claim.
Calculate Average Weekly Wage (AWW)
Individuals on workers’ comp are supposed to get lost wages based upon their after-tax average weekly wage. This is calculated using the highest paid 39 weeks out of the 52 weeks before the accident. It should include overtime, bonuses, discontinued fringe benefits, and even second jobs.
Watch out for insurance companies who simply estimate the average weekly wage without getting employment records. Insurance companies frequently get away with paying much less than required under Michigan law. The average weekly wage must be correct, or the amount Michigan workers’ comp settlement calculator gives will be skewed low.
Workers’ comp pays 80% of the after-tax average weekly wage. The weekly rate can be calculated using tables published by the State of Michigan. Tax filing status and number of dependents must also be known.
Workers’ Comp Settlement Calculator
A good starting point for a workers’ comp settlement calculator is multiplying the weekly rate by 52. This shows how much the insurance company pays in annual wage loss benefits. Insurance companies typically calculate a settlement offer using a multiple of this number.
Here is sample of how the math works:
$500.00 (Average Weekly Wage)
$335.38 (80% After-Tax Value – Married/1 Dependent) x 52 = $17,439.76 (Annual Payout)
$17,439.76 (Annual Payout) x 5 (Disability Period) = $87,198.80 (Settlement Amount).
Maximize Settlement Value
An experienced lawyer can maximize settlement value. Developing medical and vocational evidence is key. It is important to have a doctor say what future medical treatment is needed and get an estimate regarding cost. We also recommend exploring vocational rehabilitation options and potential cost.
Michigan Workman’s Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled employees exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (844) 316-8033 for a free consultation today.