Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits
The North Carolina workers’ compensation program is a no-fault system allowing employees who are injured on the job to obtain financial benefits. However, the types of workers’ compensation benefits available to an injured worker depend significantly on the circumstances. At the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, our dedicated Charlotte workers’ compensation lawyers have decades of experience helping those injured in a workplace accident obtain the benefits they need to get back on their feet.What Benefits Can Injured Workers Obtain?
Generally speaking, there are two types of workers’ compensation benefits: medical payment benefits and income-replacement benefits. Additionally, there are several types of income-replacement benefits, discussed in more detail below
In North Carolina, the types of workers’ compensation benefits include:Medical Benefits
In the event a worker suffers a qualifying work-related injury or occupational disease, their employer or their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier must pay for all medical care related to the worker’s injuries. Further, employees are not responsible for any co-pays or deductibles. However, there is often a dispute between workers and their employer’s insurance company about which doctors will provide treatment. Generally, an employer or their insurance company can choose the providers; however, workers are entitled to a second opinion.Income Replacement Benefits
Workplace injuries often result in a worker missing work and, in turn, missing out on earning income. Thus, the workers’ compensation system allows for the payment of disability benefits, depending on the extent of a worker’s injuries and how long they will be out of work. Below are the types of workers’ compensation disability benefits:
Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits – TTD benefits are paid when a worker is completely unable to work and kick in after seven days of missed work. The seven days do not need to be consecutive, but weekends and holidays do not count; only days that you would have worked but for your injuries. TTD benefits are capped at two-thirds of a worker’s average weekly wage and generally last for a maximum of 500 weeks.
Permanent Total Disability (PTD) Benefits – PTD benefits are payable to injured workers whose injuries are so severe that they cannot work again. A worker is eligible for PTD benefits after they exhaust their TTD benefits and suffer one of the following:
- You lost the function of any two of the following: hands, arms, feet, legs, eyes;
- You suffered a spinal cord injury resulting in upper-body, lower-body, or full-body paralysis;
- You suffered a head injury resulting in permanent disability; or
- You suffered second- or third-degree burns across one-third of your body.
Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) Benefits – TPD benefits are payable to those workers whose injuries do not prevent them from working entirely but prevent them from earning the same income as they did before the accident. This may be because a worker cannot work as many hours or because they were transferred to a light duty position that pays a lower wage.
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) Benefits - PTD benefits are payable to workers who suffer permanent injuries affecting certain parts of their bodies. Due to their injuries, they can still work, but only at the same capacity as they did before their injuries.
The workers’ compensation process, although straightforward in principle, is actually quite complex. Adding to the challenges workers face is that an employer’s insurance company often attempts to deny valid claims, offer low-ball settlement offers, or cut off benefits once an employee returns to work. An experienced North Carolina workers’ compensation lawyer can help employees understand their rights.Schedule a Free Consultation with an Experienced North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyer at the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC
If you have questions about what types of workers’ compensation benefits you may be entitled to, reach out to the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC. At the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, we have a team of senior attorneys with extensive experience helping clients successfully navigate the complex workers’ compensation system. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with a Charlotte workers’ compensation lawyer, give us a call at 704-405-2580. You can also reach one of our Concord workers’ compensation lawyers at 704-918-4747.