Temporary or Permanent Disability Benefits
Depending on your disability classification, you may elect to receive weekly benefit payments and/or a lump sum payment for your impairment. If you are receiving weekly disability benefits and are seeking an attorney to represent you with respect to your workers’ compensation claim, you should always ask how the attorney’s fees will be paid when you receive your benefits. Some attorneys request to obtain every fourth check of their clients’ weekly benefit payments, even if their client is already receiving disability benefits before they walk in the attorney’s door.
At Brown Moore & Associates, PLLC, we understand how essential weekly payments are for our clients who are seeking to make ends meet while being out of work. We do not seek or obtain attorney fees from weekly benefit payments that have initiated in workers’ compensation claims in which liability has been accepted by the employer or insurer. This makes a substantial difference for our clients in meeting their financial obligations when they are otherwise without wages.
For more than 50 combined years, our firm’s Charlotte disability benefits attorneys have focused on advising and educating clients. We focus on helping clients make informed decisions in an effort to maximize their potential to recover benefits. Contact our law firm today to meet with a highly skilled workers’ compensation disability benefits attorney. We have the experience, understanding and dedication to preserve your best interests in negotiations, mediations and hearings before the Industrial Commission.
What to Expect From Your Doctor Following a Workplace Injury
After visiting your doctor following a workplace injury, you can expect one of these outcomes:
- You could be given the go-ahead to return to work until your next medical appointment, with no restrictions.
- You could be allowed to return to work with restrictions, such as forbidding you to stand or walk more than 15 minutes at a time or carry no more than 10 pounds. These restrictions may or may not impact your ability to perform your job depending upon whether your employer can accommodate these restrictions
- Your doctor could recommend that you stop working, at least until your next medical appointment.
Determining Your Disability Classification
If your doctor recommends that you stop working, you will be designated as having a temporary disability. You will also likely be considered temporarily disabled in the event you are given work restrictions that limit your ability to perform your job. You would be eligible for monetary benefits based on your classification, such as:
- Temporary Total Disability (TTD): If you are written out of work or are completely unable to perform your job due to work restrictions, you would be eligible to obtain temporary total disability benefits for up to 500 weeks from the date of your injury (for those workers who were injured prior to June 24, 2011, these benefits could extend a worker’s entire life).
- Temporary Partial Disability (TPD): If you are able to return to work, but do so at reduced earnings, you would be entitled to supplementary pay from the workers’ compensation insurer for a period of up to 500 weeks, including those weeks in which the workers received Temporary Total Disability Benefits (for those workers who were injured prior to June 24, 2011, this period would be 300 weeks).
- Permanent Partial Disability (PPD): If you suffered a permanent injury to a part of your body or have suffered an amputation, hearing loss or vision loss, you would be considered to have a permanent partial disability. This would entitle you to payment of a lump sum based upon the part of your body injured and the severity of the injury. A worker may collect Temporary Disability benefits and later collect a Permanent Partial Disability benefit.
- Permanent Total Disability (PTD): If, perhaps, you are unable to work again because of a permanent and total loss of your body parts, you would be considered to have a permanent total disability. Certain categories of injured workers would be entitled to lifetime disability benefits. Other categories of injured workers would have to petition the Industrial Commission for a judicial finding of entitlement to lifetime benefits.
Nuances that determine which disability classification you fall under can make thousands of dollars of difference in the workers’ compensation benefits you receive. The level of your benefits can also be affected by:
- Average weekly wage or compensation rate calculations
- Impairment rating
- Eligibility of your ailment or injury to be classified as a qualifying occupational disease or injury by accident
- Ability to return to part-time work or work at a lesser wage
Our top priority is to protect your rights as an injured worker. We will apply our years of experience and legal skills to help you navigate through the North Carolina workers’ compensation maze.
Contact a Monroe Workers’ Compensation Disability Attorney
Whether you have a temporary or a total disability, talk to one of our workers’ compensation lawyers and learn how we can help you obtain the benefits you are entitled to receive through North Carolina’s workers’ compensation system. Contact our law firm online or call 800-948-0577 to schedule a consultation with a highly skilled Charlotte workers’ compensation lawyer.