Monday, August 8, 2011

Benefits Available

My next few blog posts will address the three types of benefits available to people who have suffered on-the-job injuries and have workers compensation claims.  These are (1) weekly checks while you’re out of work; (2) medical treatment to help you recover; and (3) a check based on any permanent disability you have as a result of your on-the-job injury.
Today’s post deals with (1) – weekly checks while you’re out of work.  As long as your doctor says that you are unable to work because of your injury, or your doctor released you to work with restrictions and your employer cannot return you to work within those restrictions, your employer and your workers compensation insurance company are obligated to pay you two-thirds of your average weekly wage, but this amount is capped at $500 per week.  This is called temporary total disability (TTD) benefits.
For example, if you were earning an average of $600 per week before you got hurt, you would be entitled to $400 per week from workers compensation benefits (2/3 of your average weekly wage before you got hurt).  Remember this is calculated on your “gross” wage (before taxes are taken out), NOT your take-home pay.
However, if you were earning $900 per week on average before you were hurt on the job, you would receive only $500 per week, rather than $600, because your weekly workers compensation check would be capped at $500 per week.
Georgia’s workers compensation law does not require your employer/workers compensation insurer to pay you for the first week you miss from work unless and until you’ve missed THREE (3) weeks of work.  In other words, at the end of the first week out of work, you do not receive a check.  At the end of the second week out of work, you receive a check for one week’s lost income, and at the end of the third week out of work, you receive a check for two week’s lost income.
If it sounds confusing, it can be, and you should contact a lawyer to discuss your claim as soon as possible.
I've been practicing law in the metro Atlanta area since graduating from UGA Law School in 1986, and I've represented hundreds of injured men and women with their workers compensation cases during over 25 years of practicing law.
For more information, visit my website at or call or email us for a free in-person consultation at 770-425-5573 or
William C. (Bill) Gentry