Wilmington Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Provide Dedicated Counsel for Injured Workers
Injured Workers May be Entitled to Compensation for Lost Wages
In the state of Delaware, most workers who become injured or ill due to work conditions or an on-the-job accident are entitled to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits. This financial support is intended to pay for losses occurring after an employee suffers a work injury.
In addition to funds for medical care, Workers’ Compensation supplements or replaces income lost after a temporary or permanent injury leaves an employee unable to work. To determine exactly how much an injured worker will receive, many factors are considered.
Calculating Workers’ Compensation Benefits
In Delaware and in most states, Workers’ Compensation benefits replace a portion of the injured worker’s income while they are unable to work. This amount is calculated based on the severity of the impairment and the extent to which it precludes the person from doing their job. Considerations are made for workers who, while they cannot resume their original job on a full-time basis, can either work less or do another less-physical job instead.
Other workers suffer a disabling, irreversible injury like permanent damage to a part of the body or an amputation. For these types of injuries there are “unscheduled” or “scheduled” loss benefits based on an impairment rating provided by a doctor.
Temporary Partial Disability
Individuals who are able to work while being treated for their work injury receive temporary partial disability (TPD) benefits up to a maximum of 300 weeks. These workers are usually under a doctor’s restrictions and perform “light-work” for a lower wage until cleared to resume their original job duties. TBD benefits are two-thirds of the difference between income earned prior to an injury and income earned after.
Permanent Partial Disability
If a doctor believes the worker’s condition will no longer improve with medical care, they have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI.) At this time, a doctor determines if the worker has a permanent disability. Workers who can still work in some capacity, despite some permanent limitations receive permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits. In Delaware, PPD benefits are calculated on a scheduled system based on what part of the body is lost or permanently impaired.
Scheduled Loss Benefits
Body parts are assigned a certain number of weeks for payment. Scheduled body parts in Delaware include fingers, toes, arms, legs, feet, hearing, and vision. Scheduled loss benefits are two-thirds of the worker’s income multiplied by how impaired the body part is and how many weeks that body part is assigned.
Unscheduled Loss Benefits
Some body parts are not included in Delaware’s schedule of losses. Unscheduled loss benefits are calculated using an impairment rating provided by a physician multiplied by two-thirds of the worker’s average salary over the course of 300 weeks.
Unfortunately for some workers, the reality is they will never work again. For these individuals, Delaware provides total disability benefits. Total disability benefits are the equivalent of two-thirds of the worker’s weekly income up to the state maximum in Delaware. Workers are eligible to receive these benefits as long as they are totally disabled.
Although some conditions like bone breaks, sprains, and strains may seem relatively minor in contrast to others, they can still render workers totally disabled. More severe conditions like paralysis, traumatic brain injury, and loss of multiple body parts are nearly always likely to cause total disability.
It should be noted that for workers who are fatally injured on the job, death or survivors’ benefits may also be available for dependent spouses and children. A Wilmington Workers’ Compensation lawyer is a great resource for answering questions about wage loss or death benefits in Delaware.
Wilmington Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at McCann & Wall, LLC Provide Guidance on Wage Loss Calculations
A severe, life-changing work injury can be devasting both physically and emotionally. Workers’ Compensation benefits help to reduce any additional financial strain the loss of income may cause. The experienced Wilmington Workers’ Compensation lawyers at McCann & Wall, LLC understand Delaware Workers’ Compensation laws and wage loss calculation criteria.
With offices throughout Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey, we proudly represent clients throughout the greater Philadelphia region, including the areas of Dover, Newark, Middletown, and Wilmington, Delaware.