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If You are Injured at Work-Where Will Your Income Come From?
Understanding how workers’ compensation benefits are paid is important for employees in Maryland who have been injured on the job. Workplace injuries often result in an interruption in income for the injured worker. If a workplace injury causes the worker to be unable to work, the worker then has to consider where his or her income will come from. As a stop gap measure, the worker may initially elect to use sick time and/or vacation time. The injured worker, however, should not delay in filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits as a delay may affect the timing of receiving compensation allowed under Maryland’s Workers’ Compensation Law.
The workers’ compensation attorneys at Jenkins, Block and Associates, work with our clients to ensure they receive all benefits to which they are entitled. Further, our attorneys explain to our clients the different forms of monetary benefits allowed under Maryland’s Workers’ Compensation Statute. By contacting Jenkins, Block and Associates early in the process, our attorneys can guide an injured worker through the stress associated with being unable to work. Bills will not stop. Therefore, it is important to take the necessary steps to ensure that workers’ compensation benefits are received in a timely fashion.
In Maryland, workers’ compensation benefits are generally paid weekly. The amount of the weekly payment depends upon the following factors: (1) The injured workers’ average weekly wage. (2) The type of benefit being paid. (3) The year in which the accident occurred. (4) The maximum limit for workers’ compensation benefits set by statute. And, (5) The entity paying the benefit.
Following an on the job injury, the first monetary benefit to which an employee may be entitled through workers’ comp is called “temporary total disability” or “TTD.” TTD benefits are paid by the workers’ compensation insurance carrier on a weekly basis. The amount of weekly TTD benefits is two-thirds of the injured workers’ average weekly wage. To be entitled to TTD the injured worker needs to be under active medical treatment and authorized off work by a treating physician.
Once the injured worker reaches maximum medical improve “MMI,” TTD benefits are terminated. Hopefully, the injured worker is back to work at that point so that there are no gaps in the injured workers’ income. If, however, the injured worker is not back to work then there may be other workers’ compensation benefits to which the worker is entitled. For example, if the injured worker has permanent physical restrictions as a result of the accident that prevent him or her from returning to the prior job, the worker may receive vocational rehabilitation benefits. As with TTD benefits, vocational benefits are paid weekly at the same rate as TTD benefits. The purpose of vocational benefits is to provide the injured worker with an income source while the injured worker finds new employment. Once the injured worker gets back to work, vocational benefits end.
The final monetary benefit allowable under Maryland’s workers’ compensation statute is for permanent disability. The benefit is referred to as either permanent partial disability or permanent total disability. The purpose of permanent disability benefits is to compensate the injured worker for any permanent impairment resulting from the workplace injury. There are many factors that influence the size of a permanent disability benefit. Such factors will be addressed in a later Blog.
If you have been injured on the job, please call the workers’ compensation lawyers at Jenkins, Block and Associates, P.C. 1-800-243-7122. Consultations are free.
We have four offices across Maryland and Virginia with trained legal professionals ready to assist you. Please CALL US at 1-800-243-2439 to be directed to the closest Jenkins Block & Associates location to you.