You may be entitled to scheduled loss compensation after suffering a work-related injury. The schedule comprises a list of injuries and their corresponding compensations. You automatically qualify for the listed compensation if you suffer a scheduled injury. Below are four things you should know about scheduled losses in workers' compensation claims.
1. You Don't Have to Lose a Body Part
Scheduled losses list compensation for injuries involving losses of several body parts. For example, there are compensation lists for losing a foot, finger, leg, and hand. However, you do not have to lose a body part to benefit from scheduled loss compensation. Many schedules also include loss of bodily functions.
For example, some states have scheduled losses and compensation for loss of hearing, vision, and paralysis. Some states even include significant scarring and disfigurement.
2. You May Qualify For Partial Compensation
The setup and regulation for scheduled losses make it seem as if you have to lose a whole body part or fully lose the function of a body part to benefit from the compensation scheme. However, that is not always the case since some states include partial compensation for partial losses.
In such a case, a doctor will examine your disability and assign it a rating. The rating determines the compensation you deserve. Consider a scheduled loss of hand that attracts $50,000 compensation. You should get $25,000 after a hand injury that a doctor assigns a 50% loss of use.
3. You Must Reach MMI
You must reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) to qualify for a scheduled loss. The MMI is when your doctors have exhausted all treatment options and do not expect a significant change in your condition, even with further treatment.
Reaching MMI is significant; it helps workers' compensation insurance to know your true condition. For example, a condition that looks like total arm paralysis may improve to partial arm paralysis by the time you reach MMI. Therefore, workers' compensation waits for MMI to determine your deserved compensation.
4. The Compensation Is Not Available in Some States
Lastly, you should know that not all states have scheduled losses in workers' compensation claims. However, the lack of a scheduled loss does not bar you from collecting workers' compensation claims.
Some states will evaluate the degree of your injury to determine your compensation. Others consider how much of your wages you have lost due to the injury. Ultimately, you get what you deserve as long as you prove your injury and its connection to your job. For more information, contact a company like Siben & Siben LLP.