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What Benefits Are Available Under Workers’ Comp?

Published: Feb 11, 2022 in Workplace accidents
Woman on the phone with a cast on her arm

When you have suffered a work-related injury, you may have the right to specific types of compensation and benefits. Most employers across Alabama must provide their employees with workers’ compensation insurance coverage.

However, many injury victims are unsure what these workers’ comp benefits consist of. Here’s more about what benefits you could collect when approved for workers’ compensation benefits in Alabama.

Workers’ Comp Benefits Available After an Injury

Your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance provider must compensate you for specific benefits when you have suffered an on-the-job injury. These benefits include:

  • Complete coverage of your medical expenses as they relate to your work injury
  • Vocational rehabilitation benefits if your injuries prevent you from returning to the same line of work
  • Transportation costs for mileage and travel
  • Death benefits for surviving family members of someone who passed away from a work-related injury

Disability Benefits

One of the most important benefits you can collect when approved for workers’ compensation in Alabama is disability benefits. These benefits compensate you for a portion of your lost wages while you recover.

Generally, work injury victims collect two-thirds of their average weekly salary. However, the exact amount of compensation you can collect varies depending on how your injuries are classified.

Types of Workers’ Comp Disability Benefits

There are several types of disability benefits you could be entitled to after suffering a work injury in Alabama, including:

Temporary Disability Benefits

Temporary disability benefits are awarded when you can’t work and are recovering from your work injury. The waiting period for temporary disability benefits is three days unless you have been disabled for 21 days or longer.

There are two types of temporary disability benefits: temporary total disability benefits and temporary partial disability benefits.

  • Temporary total disability (TTD) benefits are awarded when you are physically incapable of doing any work during your recovery.
  • Temporary partial disability benefits are paid when you can do a portion of work but not your total capacity. These benefits apply when injury victims are restricted to part-time work or light-duty tasks.

Permanent Disability Benefits

There are two types of permanent disability coverage: permanent partial disability and permanent total disability coverage.

  • Permanent partial disability benefits apply when an injury victim has reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). Here, you’ll receive a permanent disability rating that determines what percentage you are considered to be disabled.
  • Permanent total disability benefits apply when an injury victim is deemed totally disabled as a result of their work-related injuries. This means you are physically incapable of doing any type of work for any industry.

How Are Workers’ Comp Benefits Calculated in Alabama

The Alabama Department of Labor publishes the maximum and minimum benefits someone can receive after suffering an on-the-job injury. Disability benefits are calculated based on several factors, including the severity of your injury, scheduled or unscheduled awards, and any awards for disfigurement.

Scheduled Awards

Scheduled awards describe the number of weeks allowable for someone to collect disability benefits based on the loss of use or loss of certain types of body parts. Scheduled awards will generally amount to two-thirds of your average weekly wages or a maximum of $275 per week, whichever amount is less.

Unscheduled Awards

Unscheduled awards include injuries and impairments to specific parts of your body that are not included in the list of scheduled awards. Unscheduled awards are generally paid out at two-thirds of your average weekly wages or a maximum of $275 per week.

How Much Are Alabama Workers’ Comp Benefits?

Generally, both temporary and permanent disability benefits are paid out at two-thirds of your average weekly wages. However, there are minimum and maximum amounts for these benefits based on the type of injury, the injured body part, and the severity of your injuries.

There are also minimum and maximum amounts of time to collect disability benefits. For example, you could collect temporary total disability benefits until you return to work or have reached maximum medical improvement.

However, if you were diagnosed with a temporary partial disability, you could only collect benefits for a maximum of 300 weeks.

Your employer may elect to ask the courts to reduce or end your disability benefits entirely if they argue that you can come back to work due to physical improvement or job retraining.

Contact a Workers’ Comp Lawyer in Alabama

If you have questions or concerns surrounding which Alabama workers’ compensation benefits you could be entitled to, reach out to a knowledgeable Alabama workers’ comp lawyer at Belt & Bruner, P.C. for the answers you’ve been looking for.

Schedule your no-cost, risk-free consultation when you complete our convenient contact form or give our office a call at 205-933-1500 to get started on your case.