Friday, March 25, 2016

Types of Benefits for Minnesota Workers’ Compensation

At Meuser Law Office, when we initially meet with new clients, we like to take the time to sit down, meet with them, field their questions that they may have and explain to them what types of benefits are potentially available to them under the Minnesota Workers’ Compensation system. First, there are a couple different types of wage loss benefits. Wage loss benefits are all based on what is called an average weekly wage. An average weekly wage is calculated based on what the injured worker was making 26 weeks before the date of injury.  This should include overtime if the overtime was regular and this should also include if the employee was working at a different job as well. Insurers typically don’t include overtime and other wages, therefore it’s important to get a lawyer who will help get a higher average weekly wage.

A couple different types of benefits are:

Temporary Total Disability. That’s that time you are completely off of work and it is 2/3 of your average weekly wage, non-taxable.
Temporary Partial Disability. If you go back to work and you’re not working in the same capacity you were and you’re earning less or at a different job, that is 2/3 of the difference of what you were making at the time of the injury subtracted from what you are making now, also non-taxable.
Permanent Total Disability. This is another type of wage loss benefit paid out in a weekly basis and that is paid the same rate as a temporary total disability.

In workers’ compensation there is no pain and suffering so the legislature put together a benefit known as Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) and that is to compensate you for the loss or use or function of a body part and is paid out as a lump sum.

Employees are also entitled to rehabilitation benefits that include the services of a QRC, a Qualified Rehabilitation Consultant.  A QRC helps with medical management, going with the employee to their appointments, helps to keep the insurance company and the employee’s attorney informed of what is going on as well as helps to make sure the job the employee is doing is actually physically suitable and within their restrictions. If the employee cannot go back to the date of injury employer, the QRC helps them find new employment doing job searches and assists them with that.

There is also a benefit known as retraining. Retraining is very rare in the Minnesota workers’ compensation system, but if the injuries are so serious that the employees sustained and the employee is a high wage earner and there is no way they can get back to the same wage they were making before the injury then there is a potential that the insurance company would have to pay for the employee to get retrained.

Meuser Law Office, P.A. is one of the few workers’ compensation law firms in the state of Minnesota that also handles PERA and MSRS disability claims. We’ve successfully represented hundreds of State Patrol, police officers and firefighters throughout the state for both workers’ compensation and PERA/MSRS disability claims. If you believe that your employer has miscalculated your wage loss benefits or simply want to double check, contact an attorney at Meuser Law Office, P.A. for a free, no-obligation consultation. Our knowledgeable attorneys handle Minnesota workers’ compensation cases on a daily basis and are very familiar with the most current laws and calculations to determine your average wage.  We will ensure you receive the full benefits you are entitled.  Call us today at 1-877-746-5680.

Mary Beth Boyceby Mary Beth
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