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Workers Compensation NC - my husband injured his wrist back in 2009 and received a 3% perm partial impairment rating.

Charlotte, NC |

He never received an offer for a settlement. in 2010 when he was finally released with MMI. We did not know at that time he had a rating. After reviewing some of his old medical records this past month (5/2014), I discovered the information about this rating and contacted the workers comp insurance company for his employer. They claim they are gathering his wage information from that time period, but I have not heard back. .What are his rights to the money and how much can he expect to receive? How long should we expect this to take? Will he receive it in one lump sum? He earns about 17 per hour (680/week plus an average of 5 hours OT per week). Is there a minimum rating on a body part in order to receive a settlement (in particular, the hand or wrist)?

Attorney Answers 5


As his claim is a pre-reform Act case, he will definitely want to seek counsel about resolution. There is no rush to resolve it. He may want to see an IME physician or request a second opinion on the rating. There is no minimum rating, but he may be entitled to a higher one based on the second opinion. NC Is a scheduled injury State, so the amount of the permanency rating entitles him to a certain number of weeks of compensation. At this point, it would be received in a lump sum. However, there may be reasons he does not want to resolve this on the rating. Discuss with an attorney well versed in worker's compensation.

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Thanks for your question...the silver lining for your husband is that the case remains open and he remains entitled to workers comp benefits as the 2 year jurisdictional bar (essentially statute of limitations) will not run until his rating is paid. A 100% disability rating would entitle your husband to 200 weeks of benefits. Since he has a 3% rating, we would take 3% of 200 which would entitle your husband to 6 weeks of benefits at his weekly compensation rate (generally his avg. gross weekly earnings over the 52 weeks preceding the injury. So, given the information you provided, if he were earning an average of $807.50 per week during the 52 weeks preceding his injury, we would take 0.6667% of that sum (538.36) and multiply by 6 weeks ($3,230.16). In order to verify the numbers, you will absolutely, positively need the payroll records for the 52 week period preceding the injury.

In addition, your husband may be entitled to a second opinion, although that might be difficult considering the time lapse from the rating until now.

If your husband is still having problems with the wrist, he may be entitled to continuing medical benefits as well.

I would advise that you contact an attorney to discuss your husband's case in detail and see what options may be available in regard to the rating, medical care and settlement of the claim.

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If you go to my Profile here on AVVO and look at my "Legal Guides" I have one about the calculation of Average Weekly Wages and another one about PPD Ratings. I think those two Guides will give you some helpful information. I would attach links for you but I am posting this from my phone and attaching links from the phone is not easy!

This answer is intended as general information and not as specific legal advice. If you want to have a free consultation with me, please contact me through AVVO.

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Bobby L. Bollinger Jr.

Bobby L. Bollinger Jr.


Here are links to those Guides I mentioned:


You've provided a lot of helpful information and I basically agree with the analyses of the other attorneys. As an attorney presented with this info, I would have a number of other questions which might affect the amount of the recovery. Is your husband earning more or less now than he did when he was injured? If he's earning less, is it due to restrictions from his injury? There might be a number of other facts for a workers compensation attorney to consider in resolving your claim. He may recommend a second opinion with respect to the rating, which would hopefully increase your recovery. Like the other attorneys' responses suggest, you should consult an attorney who does a significant amount of workers compensation to make sure your husband's interests are protected.

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The other attorneys who've already answered have provided some very useful information. It is not entirely clear from your post, but it sounds as if your husband is still working for the same company where he worked before being injured and that he has not required additional medical care for this injury for an extended, which is probably why the insurance company has not been in a rush to settle the case in full through what is called a "clincher" or to pay out the value of the injury. I would suggest contacting a local attorney who handles a good bit of NC worker's comp for injured employees to help you get to the bottom of the value of the claim, as there a number of complex issues including your husband's right to get a 2nd opinion on the rating, what body part or body pats apply, whether there is an ongoing wage loss, among other issues. Before starting my practice, which includes representing injured workers here in Charlotte, I represented insurance companies for many years and I can assure you, they have attorneys and adjusters working hard to limit what they might pay your husband or delay having to pay anything at all. Glad to answer any additional questions you might have.

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