Workers’ Compensation And Lost Wage Replacement
Job injuries are financially devastating to most families. Most Americans have practically nothing in their savings accounts. Making matters worse, a job injury victim is a family’s only or primary breadwinner. The inability to earn a paycheck is also very hard emotionally on job injury victims. The inability to provide for their families often depresses them, making it more difficult to recover from their physical and emotional injuries.
Fortunately, a Tampa workers’ compensation lawyer can obtain wage replacement benefits in these situations. Typically, workers don’t have to prove fault to obtain these benefits. The lost wage replacement benefit reduces dependency on credit cards, charitable handouts, and other such sources. Since their families are on more solid ground financially, these job injury victims don’t worry as much about bills, so they can focus on getting better.
Most falls and other trauma diseases are temporary disabilities. These victims cannot work, or at least cannot work full-time at their regular jobs, until their doctors clear them to go back to work.
In these situations, workers’ comp usually pays two-thirds of the victim’s average weekly wage, or two-thirds of the difference between the higher and lower AWW. In terms of the length of benefits, the law recently changed in the Sunshine State. Now, these lost wage benefits last up to 104 weeks (two years) in Florida.
Medical bill payment benefits also last up to 104 weeks in Florida. Usually, the workers’ compensation insurance company pays all reasonably necessary medical bills. This category includes doctor bills as well as ancillary expenses, like medical devices and transportation expenses.
Temporary disability wage replacement benefits usually hinge on the AWW, which considers future wages, as well as past wages. If Fred’s job injury causes him to miss performance bonus benchmarks and overtime opportunities, his workers’ compensation benefits must account for these losses.
If a job-related injury is permanently disabling, a Tampa workers’ compensation lawyer can often obtain a lump-sum payment. The amount of this payment usually depends on the nature and extent of the disability.
A “disability” is not just a medical issue. Other factors, such as the victim’s vocational and educational history, come into play. Injuries that are disabling to certain workers, such as oil field workers, may not be disabling to other workers, such as bankers.
Occupational diseases, like hearing loss, often prompt disability payments. Other times, a severe trauma injury is permanently disabling. Lost digits or members, like fingers or hands, are disabling. Additionally, some trauma injuries never entirely heal. If Jennifer breaks her shoulder, she may permanently lose some range of motion in that joint.
Insurance companies often use actuarial tables to determine the amount of disability payments in these situations. A Tampa workers’ compensation lawyer works to ensure that the wage replacement benefits are tailored to the individual.
Work With a Hard-Hitting Hillsborough County Attorney
Injury victims are entitled to important financial benefits. For a free consultation with an experienced job injury lawyer in Tampa, contact Kobal Law. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.