I was laid off six months ago, and am having trouble finding a job. I am receiving unemployment benefits. I also have a workmans comp claim, from a job prior to the one I was laid off at. I have not been receiving any workmans comp benefits, but am about to receive a settlement for being permanent and stationary. Do I have to report this money to unemployment as income? Will it affect the unemployment benefits I am receiving?
Workers' Compensation Lawyer
In California, the Unemployment Insurance Program, commonly referred to as UI, provides weekly unemployment insurance payments for workers who lose their job through no fault of their own. UI benefits are not based on assets or income.
California State Disability Insurance (SDI) is a partial wage-replacement insurance plan for California workers. SDI provides short-term benefits to eligible workers. You cannot receive UI/SDI for the same periods you are paid TTD (lost wages paid by workers compensation).
Permanent disability advance (PDA) is a voluntary lump sum payment of permanent disability you are due in the future. PDA (settlement money) has no bearing on your SDI or UI. So long as you meet the SDI or UI criteria benefits should be due.
This answer is provided for informational purposes only. Actual legal advice can only be provided in an office consultation by an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction, with experience in the area of law in which your concern lies.
Workers' Compensation Lawyer
The response from David Alan Karas above this response is well worth rereading.
The practical answer is that it is YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to insure that the EDD (the State of California Employment Development Department) files a lien in your workers' compensation claim and serves the lien to the defendant employer and insurance carrier BEFORE you "settle" your workers' compensation claim. You should go to the web and get an address for EDD and write to EDD's workers' compensation lien department and reference your workers' compensation claim number, the address of the insurance carrier, etc. Also, write to the claims adjuster on the workers' compensation claim to advise her that you have received unemployment benefits and specify the period.
In California, one cannot receive workers' compensation TTD (temporary disability benefits) for the same period as Unemployment Benefits. The benefits must be coordinated. Sometimes, the TTD rate is less than the Unemployment Benefits rate and the State of CA's EDD will pay the difference. If it is determined that you should have been receiving medical TTD benefits from the workers' compensation insurance carrier when you received unemployment benefits from the State of California, the workers' compensation carrier must pay the amount of what would have been TTD payments to the State of California Employment Development Department. Hence, the need for the state to file a lien (a claim on your workers' comp benefits) in your matter. If by chance that workers' comp carrier pays you for the same period, YOU, not the workers' compensation carrier, must pay the monies received back to the state of California as you would have received an impermissible double-recovery,