I haul equiptment for a large construction company,that i have worked for for 8 years and while taking a roller off of my trailer,while my ramps were only pieced together, causing my roller to go off the side of my trailer . I hung on to the steering wheel and fell 8 ft, on to my shoulder thus causing my cuff to tear 3/4 of the way and ripping my tendon.
A shoulder injury is classified as an unscheduled injury. There is not a easy formula for figuring out the value of a shoulder injury. If a worker has suffered an unscheduled injury, the emphasis for determining damages shifts from only evaluating the physical functional impairment to instead determining the reduction in potential earning capacity. Assessing the loss of the potential earning capacity involves analyzing the totality of circumstances, including the injured employee’s age, education, qualifications, experience, motivation, loss of earnings, severity and location of the injury, work restrictions, inability to engage in employment for which the employee is fitted, and the employer’s offer of continuing work or failure to offer continuing work.
PPD benefits for unscheduled injuries are generally paid based on a maximum of 500 weeks. For example, if a worker is found to have suffered 50% industrial disability or loss of earning capacity, he is entitled to collect 250 weeks of PPD benefits.
Mr. Hamel did an excellent job of answering your question. You need to consults with an Iowa licensed attorney. Our office handles these cases. We are located in Omaha.
Mr. Hamel is correct. There is no formula for calculating the value of your injury in weeks of compensation payable. Thus, even if an average weekly wage, and rate of compensation can be calculated, no one can give you a precise dollar value of your claim.
In the words of the Iowa Department of Workers' Compensation:
When an injury results in a permanent disability to a part of the person that is not a scheduled member, it is referred to as an industrial disability that is compensated according to the percent that the disability reduced the person's earning capacity. These typically include back, neck, shoulder, and hip injuries. Factors to be considered in determining industrial disability are: any change in the employee's earnings caused by the injury; employee’s medical condition prior to injury, immediately after the injury and presently; the situs of the injury; its severity and the length of healing period; the work experience of the employee prior to the injury, after the injury and potential for rehabilitation; the employees qualifications intellectually, emotionally, and physically; age; education; motivation; functional impairment as a result of the injury; loss of earnings caused by a job transfer for reasons related to the injury; and inability because of the injury to engage in employment for which the employee is fitted.
There are no specific guidelines that indicate how each of the factors is to be considered.
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Your injury is considered an injury to your body as a whole and is therefor compensated based on the industrial disability sustained as a result of the injury. The raring is one small factor in what your entitlement is under Iowa law. The question that determines your entitlement is how the injury affects your future ability to work and earn a living. A 5 percent impairment based on a shoulder injury could be worth less or much more depending on your age, education, restrictions, past work history, ability to work your employment position and other factors. Based on these factors a finding is made as to what percentage of your earning capacity has been lost because of the permanency of the injury. A 5 percent shoulder could result in a 100 percent loss of ability to work or some other amount. Because of the complexity of your ultimate entitlement under Iowa law, I think it would help you to talk to an Iowa workers compensation lawyer. Most in the state will provide you a free consultation to provide you advice.
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