Being injured on the job can be a frightening and overwhelming experience. Not only do you have to deal with the pain and recovery from your injuries, but you also have to worry about how you will support yourself and your family if you cannot work. That’s where workers’ compensation comes in.
Different Types of Disability Pay
Four main types of disability benefits are provided by the Workers’ Compensation Act:
Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
A temporary total disability is one that prevents you from working for a period of time but is not expected to be permanent. Once your condition improves, you may return to work with or without any restrictions. You will receive benefits until you return to work or your physician deems you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI).
TTD benefits are two-thirds (66 ⅔ percent) of your pre-injury wage, subject to the maximum workers’ compensation AWW limit, which changes every six months.
If an injured worker is undergoing vocational rehabilitation, he or she can receive “maintenance benefits”. Maintenance benefits are paid at the same rate as TTD benefits and last as long as the worker is in the rehabilitation program.
Temporary Partial Disability (TPD)
This type of disability prevents you from performing some, but not all, of your job duties. As a result, you can only work “light-duty” at a wage lower than your pre-injury wage. You will typically only receive benefits for a specific period of time until your condition improves or you are able to return to work full-time.
TPD benefits are two-thirds (66 ⅔ percent) of the difference between your average pre-injury wage and the gross amount you earn while on light-duty.
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)
When a work-related accident leaves a worker with a complete or partial loss of a certain body part and has reached MMI, they may receive PPD benefits. According to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, there are four types of PPD benefits:
- Wage Differential – Two-thirds (66 ⅔ percent) of the difference between their pre-injury and current (lower) wages.
- Wage differential benefits are paid for life if the injury occurred before 9/1/2011.
- Wage differential benefits are paid for five years or until the injured worker reaches 67 years of age, whichever is later.
- Schedule of Injuries – Benefits depend on certain body parts (with corresponding payout lengths). The payout length is then multiplied by 60 percent of the worker’s average weekly wage (AWW).
- Non-Schedule Injuries – Workers with injuries that are not on the above schedule but still suffer limitations may be eligible for a maximum of 500 weeks of benefits (depending on injury severity). The amount of weeks is multiplied by 60 percent of the worker’s AWW.
- Disfigurement – Certain permanent disfigurements may entitle an injured worker to 162 weeks of benefits at 60 percent of their AWW.
Permanent Total Disability (PTD)
A permanent total disability is one that completely and permanently prevents you from working ever again. If you are found to be permanently disabled, you will typically receive benefits for the rest of your life.
PTD benefits are two-thirds (66 ⅔ percent) of a worker’s AWW, subject to the state’s limits.
Seeking Additional Compensation
While workers’ compensation provides benefits for medical expenses, disability pay, vocational rehabilitation and funeral or burial costs, it does not compensate workers for the pain and suffering experienced due to a traumatic workplace injury. If you have been injured at work, you may be able to file a third-party claim for pain and suffering. To succeed on a third-party claim, you must show that someone else was at fault for your workplace accident.
If you are considering this type of claim, it is important to speak with Anesi Ozmon, so we can evaluate your case and help you understand your legal options.