Workers’ Compensation: Classifying Your Disability

After you have been treated for an on-the-job injury or illness, your doctor may form an opinion about the disability that your injury or illness has caused. This opinion is very important and can dramatically affect the wage benefits you receive. The Workers’ Compensation insurer may disagree with your doctor’s disability rating and require you to see a doctor of its choosing for an independent medical exam. The Workers’ Compensation Board may ultimately hold a hearing and take evidence before deciding on your degree of disability.
The benefits you get for lost wages will hinge on your disability rating — and an unfavorable ruling in a contested case could cost you thousands of dollars in benefits. That’s why it is crucial to have the New York lawyers of Schwartzapfel® Lawyers, P.C. at your side. Our New York lawyers have extensive experience with workers’ compensation cases. We can help you make your best possible case for workers’ compensation benefits.

Categories of Disabilities

Your disability may fall into one of four categories:

  • Temporary Total Disability. If you can’t work at any job on a temporary basis because of your injury, you can collect the full allowable wage benefit for that period.
  • Temporary Partial Disability. If your injury does not prevent you from working but temporarily affects your ability to fully do your job or any other job, you are entitled to a percentage of your wages equal to the percentage of your disability. Thus, if the Board decides you are 33 percent disabled, you’ll get 33 percent of your award during the time you are temporarily disabled.
  • Permanent Total Disability. If you are no longer able to work at all and earn a living because of your injury, you are said to be permanently totally disabled, and you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits without a weekly limit.
  • Permanent Partial Disability. If you have permanently lost part of your wage-earning capacity, you are entitled to permanent partial disability benefits. How much you will receive could depend on when you were injured.

You May Qualify for Other Benefits

You may also be entitled to other Workers’ Compensation benefits. For instance, if you have lost use of an extremity such as an arm or a leg, or if you have lost your vision or hearing, the Board may determine that you have suffered a Schedule Loss of Use — so called because Workers’ Compensation law actually sets out a schedule for the number of weeks of benefits you will receive, depending on which body part was injured. If you have suffered permanent scarring or other unsightly injuries to the head, face, or neck, you may be entitled to Disfigurement benefits of up to $20,000.

Contact Schwartzapfel® Lawyers, P.C.

If you have been injured on the job or have developed an occupational disease, you and your family will need the full range of benefits that are available — especially if you have lost some or all of your wage-earning ability. Choosing the New York lawyers of Schwartzapfel® Lawyers, P.C. may be the best decision you will ever make to secure your future. Our New York lawyers have extensive experience with Workers’ Compensation cases, and we can put that expertise to work for you to ensure that you receive fair compensation for your injury or illness. Please call us at 1-877-737-4806 or fill out our online contact form for immediate attention to your case. We will fight for you!

Schwartzapfel Lawyers P.C.
WordPress Image Lightbox