Does Workers’ Compensation Cover Long Term and Permanent Injuries?
What happens if you have sustained an injury on-the-job and it is one that will last a long time? Just because you can still work doesn’t mean that your injury isn’t permanent and occasionally disrupts your life. No, some injuries will limit what you are able to do and cause you medical distress by requiring you to go through extensive treatment processes. If this is the case, you may wonder how you will get the compensation you deserve for these long-term or permanent injuries. You may be able to receive permanent disability benefits for the injuries you have sustained.
Permanent Disability Benefit Eligibility
There are some elements that must be proven in order to be able to receive permanent disability benefits. It is important that the injury actually arose from your job and not some other reason. You are only eligible for any kind of compensation if the injury happened during your course of employment. Let’s say that you were sent somewhere by your boss for work and ended up injured in a car accident – this will typically be seen as “during your course of employment.”
There are other determinations made for permanent disability as well. For one, the nature and severity of your injury has to render you either disabled or impaired. Your disability will typically also make it impossible for you to either go back to work to do what you were doing before, or doctor’s recommendation will show restrictions that limit what you are able to do. Under workers’ compensation law, employers are always seen as liable for work-related injuries unless the employee was in violation of work laws or under the influence.
If you did not recover 100% from your injury, then it will usually be considered as a permanent partial disability. In some cases, you may reach a point where your condition is not expected to improve, also known as maximal medical improvement. In this case, you will receive a number that reflects your percentage of permanent disability and decisions are made from there. Your rating will usually be based on exactly what your injury is and will be used to determine how many weeks of disability payments you will receive (which could range anywhere from 3 weeks to 20 years!)
Common Permanent Injuries
There are many injuries that are commonly seen in cases of permanent disability. These injuries may be permanent from the get-go and some may happen residually, or over a period of time. Now you can find out more about some of these injuries and how damages apply.
- Scars/Disfigurement: Scarring can be caused by an original injury or surgery caused due to the injury. Large and obvious scarring could gain you a lot in damages due to the fact that it causes the area to be less flexible and is visible to other people. You should always get an opinion about the cost of having the scar removed or repaired because then you will get a better number on how much compensation you could be owed.
- Back or Joint Injuries: Do you have an injury to a disk in the spine? Do you have a dislocation in a joint? If so, you will probably suffer permanent injuries. This means that, with a doctor’s opinion, you will probably receive high damages.
If you wish to receive compensation for a permanent injury, you should have good documentation of the injury given to you by a medical doctor. With a doctor’s opinion noted in your records, you should be able to receive compensation due to suffering that may come from your injuries. You should speak to a personal injury attorney that has your best interest at heart. At Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi we will fight for your rights in your time of need. Call today to find out more about your case and how we can help you when dealing with your permanent injury.