Workers’ comp lawyer gives warning about insurance companies who say people are only “partially” disabled.
Employees who do physical labor are constantly in danger of suffering career ending injuries. This is because any restrictions whatsoever can make doing their job nearly impossible. It can also be difficult for them to transition to a new career when they don’t have the qualifications, training, and education. Here is some information about workers’ comp permanent partial disability claims and how to protect your legal rights.
Employees who are injured on-the-job are entitled to workers’ comp benefits. This includes medical treatment, lost wages, and vocational rehabilitation. It does not matter who was at fault provided the accident occurred in the course and scope of employment.
How much should be paid under workers’ comp if an employee is totally disabled?
Employees who are totally disabled should get 80% of their after-tax average weekly wage. This is based upon the highest 39 weeks out of the 52 weeks before the accident. Money for overtime, discontinued fringe benefits, and second jobs should be included. Tax filing status and dependents also impact the rate.
How much should be paid under workers’ comp if an employee is partially disabled?
In Michigan, the amout paid for a workers’ comp permanent partial disability claim is calculated using the after-tax average weekly wage and post-injury wage earning capacity (PIWEC). 80% of the difference between the two amounts should be paid.
Insurance companies are looking for ways to reduce what must be paid. Disputes arise when the insurance company says a person is not totally disabled. The insurance company says a person could find work despite their restrictions. Weekly checks get reduced based upon income from a job that may or may not exist. We call these “phantom wages”, and it is not always fair.
Insurance companies hire vocational counselors to do transferable skills analyses and labor market surveys. They decide on their own what jobs are available and how much each pays. This is why workers’ comp permanent partial disability claims are so controversial. We have seen individuals get hundreds of dollars less per week based upon PIWEC.
Workers’ comp permanent partial disability settlement
In Michigan, the amount paid for a permanent partial disability workers’ comp settlement is based upon future wage loss benefits. Insurance companies look at the weekly comp rate and decide how much to offer. Higher weekly comp rates translate into larger settlements. This is why PIWEC should be contested if unfair.
We recommend speaking with an experienced workers’ comp lawyer if weekly checks have been reduced based upon PIWEC. Settlement value depends upon the weekly comp rate. Don’t accept a workers’ comp permanent partial disability settlement without getting your own vocational assessment. It is also possible to challenge vocational reports with evidence of a good-faith job search.
Need help with your claim? Contact us today!
If you suffered a permanent partial disability injury at work and need help with your workers’ comp claim and have questions about a settlement, call now to speak with an experienced attorney, or fill out our contact form for a free consultation. There is absolutely no cost or obligation. We’re here for you.
Our attorneys have been exclusively helping injured workers in Michigan for more than 40 years. Our attorneys can help you better understand workers’ comp laws and what happens after someone has been hurt on the job. To see what our own clients have to say about the caring, compassion, and communication they received from us, you can read in their own words about their experience here on our testimonials page from clients we have helped.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 40 years. Call (844) 316-8033 for a free consultation today.