Connecticut Workers' Compensation Act, Section 31-294c (Act) outlines the eligibility, the process for applying for benefits, and recoveries available in workers’ compensation cases in the state of Connecticut. Recovery may include compensation for required medical care, 75% of weekly wage while not able to work at all or earn the same amount as before the injury, and a weekly or lump sum disability payments.
According to the National Safety Council, in 2019 the total cost of work-related injuries was $171 billion, which included $53.9 billion in wages and productivity losses and over $35 billion in medical expenses.
No matter who is at fault for the accident, the injured party is entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for various losses due to the accident. Under Connecticut law, every employer with employees is required to maintain workers’ compensation. If you need help understanding your rights, receiving a fair benefit amount from workers’ compensation claim, and possibly suing an employer who may be at fault for your injuries, an experienced Connecticut workers’ compensation lawyer, Robert Sciglimpaglia, Attorney at Law, at (203) 663-2803 can assist you during this difficult time.
What Is Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ compensation is a government-created insurance program that protects employees and employers in case of an accident or injury occurring on the job. Every employer that has employees in Connecticut is required to carry workers’ compensation; no matter what the work setting is. This requirement helps to provide easier access to benefits for employees hurt on the job; however, the process is far from easy. To be eligible for benefits, proving an employer's fault is not necessary. While the program was created in order to compensate for the physical pain and financial stress after going through an on-the-job injury, it requires a thorough process to get a full benefit. Therefore, it is important to consider seeking the help of a Connecticut workers’ compensation lawyer, who can assist with the process and ensure fair compensation.
Covered Injuries and Losses Under Workers’ Compensation
Many mistakenly think that the only injuries that can be covered under workers’ compensation are serious injuries, such as those sustained in dangerous jobs, such as construction workers or heavy machinery workers. However, other employers in other workplace settings, such as offices, stores, and educational institutions are also required to carry workers’ compensation, which would cover injuries coming from slips and falls; using tools and objects; and overexertion and body reactions to various activities.
Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Workers’ compensation can cover various expenses and losses due to an on-site injury, as long as the workers’ compensation process is completed correctly. Some of the benefits outlined in the Act include medical expenses, loss of weekly wages for the time an employee is not able to work, and weekly or lump sum disability payments if injuries are long-lasting. Because it can be a long and complicated process, seeking advice from a Connecticut workers’ compensation lawyer at Robert Sciglimpaglia, Attorney at Law can ensure your legal rights remain protected. The types of workers’ compensation benefits include the following:
Temporary Partial Disability
Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) happens when an employee is able to return to work after the injury, but is not able to earn as much money as he or she did before the injury. Workers’ compensation can cover 75% of the difference between the income earned before and what an employee is able to earn after the injury.
Temporary Total Disability
Temporary Total Disability (TTP) is when an employee is prevented from going back to work for a limited amount of time after the injury. TTP benefits can cover 75% of the average weekly post-taxes pay.
Permanent Partial Disability
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) applies when due to a work-related injury one loses function or significant use of some body part. Depending on what body part has been impacted by the injury, the amount of time one is eligible to receive benefits will depend. Considering the severity of the disfigurement or the scar, the benefits may be granted for injuries for up to 208 weeks. Below is a list of some of the injuries and their eligibility timeline.
Dominant arm allows for up to 208 weeks of benefits;
Non-dominant arm allows for up to 194 weeks of benefits;
Leg allows for up to 155 weeks of benefits;
Impaired hearing allows for up to 104 weeks of benefits; or
Impaired sight in one eye allows for up to 157 weeks of benefits
Permanent Total Disability
Permanent Total Disability (PTD) applies when the maximum medical improvements have been exaggerated and there has been no full recovery, the employee is considered totally disabled and can apply for additional benefits for up to 75% of weekly post-taxes income, and may be eligible to collect those benefits for life. Some factors that may make one eligible for PTD include:
Loss of eyesight;
Loss of both hands;
Loss of feet;
Loss of one hand and one foot;
Paralysis affecting any two limbs; or
Mental disability caused by head or brain injury
Discretionary benefits may be included for additional benefits when PPD causes ongoing wage loss. Similar to other benefits, discretionary benefits can be up to 75% of the post-tax weekly income covering the difference between before injury earnings and after the injury.
Death benefits can be paid out to dependents or beneficiaries eligible to collect death benefits, if the work-related accident caused the employee’s death. Benefits typcially equal 75% of post-tax weekly income and can also cover funeral and burial expenses up to $4,000.
Learn How an Experienced Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Can Protect Your Rights
Choosing the right attorney will ensure that all issues, such as a denial of benefits, repetitive stress injuries, and wage loss benefits are addressed correctly. If you have been a victim of an injury at work and require legal advice to ensure your rights remain protected regarding your workers’ compensation claim, call the experienced attorney, Robert Sciglimpaglia, Attorney at Law, at (203) 663-2803 to speak with a Connecticut workers’ compensation lawyer today.