Being injured at work can leave you feeling extremely overwhelmed. On top of trying to physically and emotionally recover, you may be trying to figure out how you’re going to get your medical bills paid for and financially recover from the time you’re put out of work.
The good news is that workers’ compensation benefits exist in Minnesota to help injured and disabled workers through these financially tough times. One of the first questions that you (and many others) may have when filing a workers’ compensation claim is:
“What kinds of benefits can I expect?”
Because each work injury case is unique, the answer depends on a few different factors. Below, we discuss the various types of disability benefits available in Minnesota and how they may apply to you.
Depending on the injury, you may be able to obtain temporary disability benefits. As the name entails, these types of workers’ comp benefits are given for a temporary amount of time. Once a doctor signs off on your maximum medical improvement (MMI), you may return to work and these benefits will stop.
In addition, temporary benefits can be broken down into two different categories:
Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
You may be paid these benefits if you are totally unable to work because of the injury you sustained at work. Weekly compensation from these benefits is generally two-thirds of your weekly gross wage at the time of the injury. These benefits are available for a maximum of 130 weeks (this equates to 2 and a half years).
Temporary Partial Disability (TPD)
You may be able to return to work after sustaining an injury, however, you may not be able to do the same job as you did before and be placed in a new position or be working fewer hours. This is where TPD benefits come into play. These types of benefits are helpful if you experience partial wage loss as a result of a work injury.
From these benefits, you may receive two-thirds of the difference between what you earned at the time of the injury and what you currently earn; these are payable for a maximum of 225 weeks (about 4 and one-third years).
On the other hand, some injuries may be so severe that you may never recover completely. You may never be able to return to work or never be able to return to the same work that you did prior to the injury. In these cases, you may be eligible to receive permanent disability benefits.
Like temporary benefits, these can be broken down into two types:
Permanent Total Disability (PTD)
These benefits may be available if you are never able to return to work or obtain any gainful employment. You may be eligible if an injury causes:
- the total and permanent loss of sight of both eyes
- the loss of both arms at the shoulder
- the loss of both legs so close to the hips that no artificial members can be used
- complete and permanent paralysis
- total and permanent loss of mental faculties.
You may also receive these if you fit into one of these categories:
- must have a 17 percent permanent partial disability (PPD) rating of the whole body
- must have a 15 percent PPD rating of the whole body and be at least over 50 years old at the time of the injury
- must have a 13 percent PPD rating, be at least 55 years old at the time of the injury and have not completed the 12th grade or obtained a GED certificate.
This benefit is two-thirds generally two-thirds your gross weekly wage at the time of the injury.
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)
You may be eligible for these benefits if you suffered a permanent functional loss of use of the body which resulted in you being unable to return to the same paying work you did previously.
Your benefits will depend on your PPD “rating” – this is basically the percentage of your disability to the body as a whole. These are usually paid once TTD benefits end and you reach maximum medical improvement.
Dependency (Death) Benefits
Sadly, some employees do not recover from workplace injuries. If a worker dies due to an injury or occupational disease, their dependents may claim workers’ comp benefits for up to 10 years after the time of death.
The workers’ compensation process can seem like a scary and complicated process, especially if you’re trying to do it by yourself. We want you to know that you don’t have to go through this process alone.
With over over 50 years of experience advocating on behalf of injured and disabled workers, our Minneapolis workers’ compensation attorneys have the skills, knowledge, and experience that your unique situation requires. You can rest easy knowing that your case is in our hands and trust us to fight hard for the benefits you need to physically and emotionally recover from a work injury.