When it comes to work injury lawsuit settlements, many claimants have questions about the value of their claim. Some online resources promise to provide an accurate estimate of a claim’s value, but this doesn’t address the full picture. What if treatment for your injuries exceeds compensation limits? What if your injury causes a permanent disability? Here are some of the answers to these questions and why you may benefit from seeking a workers’ compensation lawyer.
Types of Losses Usually Included in a Workers’ Comp Payout
There are two types of compensation usually covered by workers’ compensation, the amounts and proportions of which vary from case to case. The first type is for medical expenses related to your work injury. This includes things like:
- Emergency room visits,
- Doctor visits,
- Hospital admission,
- Transportation to medical treatments,
- Imaging and diagnostics,
- Surgical procedures, and
Generally, most insurance companies ask you to see a particular doctor once you make a claim. While this means you may not be able to choose your doctor, it helps you follow the requirements of the claim. The other type of compensation is for lost wages during recovery; these have specific limits set by state law.
Average Workers’ Comp Settlement Amounts
Since cases vary widely from claimant to claimant, it’s nearly impossible to find a true workers’ comp settlement average. This is because there are so many factors that affect compensation limits, such as your salary, the severity of your injuries, and your recovery time. The settlement for an injury that requires 10 months away from work will obviously be very different from one involving a three-week recovery. Even similar injuries may result in different compensation due to variations in income.
Why Not Use an Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Settlement Calculator?
While browsing for resources on the internet for your claim, you may come across calculators that promise to give you an accurate estimate. Unfortunately, these calculators can’t take all the unique aspects of your case into account. If you suffer from a permanent disability due to your injury or are subject to willful discrimination, your potential payout could be very different than a calculator’s result. In general, an Arkansas workers’ compensation settlement calculator is only as good as a well-educated guess.
How Is a Workman’s Comp Settlement Calculated?
In most cases, the calculation for Arkansas workers’ comp settlements is relatively the same. However, the total amount you receive in benefits differs depending on the extent of your injuries and the time you spend unable to work.
Under ACA § 11-9-501(b), workers injured on the job may receive a maximum of 66.66% of their average weekly wage. In addition, under subsection (d) of the same law, some permanent partial disabilities qualify for a maximum payment of 75%. This means that for a standard injury, if you make $600 per week, your workers’ compensation payment cannot exceed $400 per week. However, if your injury causes a permanent partial disability, your payment can’t be higher than $450.
There are similar limits for any medical expenses you incur due to your injury. According to ACA § 11-9-509, most workers’ compensation cases cannot exceed $10,000 in medical reimbursement. There are a few instances where this limit doesn’t apply, such as when you receive a severe injury that requires extensive medical treatment. Typically, to receive more than $10,000 for treatment, you must have evidence showing that additional treatment is necessary. For example, if the doctor assigned by the insurance company presents a quote for $15,000 in medically necessary treatment, the insurance company or Workers’ Compensation Commission may waive it.
One thing to keep in mind is that these are the maximum amounts of compensation allowed by law. The insurance company will do anything to keep you from reaching the maximum, even if it’s necessary for your financial wellbeing. This is why it’s important to retain an experienced Arkansas workers’ compensation lawyer who knows the tactics insurance companies use to minimize a claim.
Injured on the Job? Call the Harris Law Firm Today
While retaining a lawyer isn’t necessary for every workers’ compensation claim, it’s important to know when you may need one. Don’t leave your claim in the hands of an Arkansas workers’ compensation settlement calculator you find online. At the Harris Law Firm, our workers’ compensation attorneys can manage the major aspects of your claim so you can focus on getting better. Since 1981, we’ve helped injured workers secure the compensation they need for their financial, physical, and mental wellbeing. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, call us at 877-714-4171 or contact us online. We’re proud to serve clients throughout Arkansas from our practice in Greenville, MS.