Once you are hurt at work and the wheels of worker’s compensation start spinning there is a common question that people start to wonder about: How much am I going to get from my worker’s comp settlement? While a popular question, it is a tough one to answer. It depends on the injury and several other factors. Just because you know the settlement amount of another injured worker, it doesn’t mean your settlement will be of a similar amount. However, some there are some factors to keep in mind.
Average Weekly Wage and Compensation Rate
Every worker’s compensation claim starts with the basic determination of your average weekly wage as it stood at the date of your injury. Any wage loss benefits that will be paid after you are injured are based upon your average weekly wage. If you are salary, this is a relatively simple calculation, but if you are hourly, it will be based on the average hours you typically work a week without overtime factored into it.
How Many Weeks Have You Been Paid?
There are a number of benefits that you can receive that have a maximum amount of weeks that you can be paid. These are not guaranteed benefits, so you may not receive them in your settlement, but they include:
- Temporary Total Disability (TTD) – Maximum of 130 Weeks
- Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) – Maximum of 225 Weeks
How Serious Was Your Injury?
Naturally, the worse your injury was and the more restrictions you have, the higher your settlement will be. If you are unable to return to your job ever, you will receive significantly more weekly wage re-compensation than if you are only out of work for a short time. If you will also need vocational training for a new position given to you, some worker’s compensation settlement will cover that as well.
However, if an injury is just temporary, you can expect some wage re-compensation and the settlement to cover you medical bills, but not much else.
How Strong is Your Claim?
If your insurance company is eager to settle, typically that means you have a decently strong claim for compensation. However, if a number of factors are being disputed, or your claim has been outright rejected, your case is weak and an insurance company may be willing to risk a hearing. If they insurance company wins, you get nothing.
This is why you need to build strong medical evidence from a reputable doctor before filing a worker’s compensation claim. It is the foundation for a strong case and will assure that you get a higher settlement.
How Old Are You?
This seems like a strange factor, but your age can deeply affect the amount of compensation you have coming to you. If you are young with a serious injury that can affect your many remaining working years, you can expect to receive a significant amount, particularly if the injury disabled you in some way. However, if you are nearing retirement age, even with serious injuries, your claim will be valued much differently. Your remaining amount of working years are always taken into consideration, and will affect the amount you are offered in a settlement.
What to Do?
Now that you know the major factors of what will affect your worker’s compensation settlement amount, what now? The first thing to do is to contact an experienced attorney either for advice or representation. Insurance companies know a lot more about worker’s compensation than you do, and they use that knowledge to keep their costs low. If you want to assure that you get everything that you have coming to you in terms of fair compensation, contact us today.
Contact A Mankato Workers' Compensation Lawyer Today
Contact the law office of Chesley, Harvey & Carpenter today at (507) 625-3000 for a free case review. We are located in Mankato, Minnesota.