How Much Is My Georgia Worker's Compensation Claim Worth?
How do I know what my Georgia worker's compensation case is worth? The settlement value of any Georgia worker's compensation claim is usually based on the future exposure of the worker's compensation claim. It could also include any past medical bills, income benefits, or permanent partial disability benefits that have not been paid yet, but are currently due or past due. Further exposure for worker's compensation claims is based on how much money the insurance company will have to pay in the areas of income benefits, medical expenses, and permanent partial disability benefits. (1) Income Benefits (TTD or TPD): Experienced worker's compensation attorneys will be able to calculate the total exposure in the area of income benefits [temporary total disability income benefits (TTD) and temporary partial disability income benefits (TPD)]. Normally this calculation is determining how many weeks remain out of the 400 week maximum from the date of the accident. The income benefit exposure can be for life if the case is designated a catastrophic worker's compensation claim. Worker's compensation lawyers are vital in establishing what the future income benefit exposure is since the value of the worker's compensation claim is greatly impacted by the income benefit exposure. Often worker's compensation doctors will return the injured worker too soon which allows the adjuster to stop or suspend income benefits. Good worker's compensation attorneys can use the Claimant's one time independent medical examination and their one free change of authorized treating physicians to establish that income benefits should be continued or started again if they have already been prematurely suspended. (2) Medical Expenses: Often good worker's compensation attorneys will look to the past medical payments each year to help establish a pattern of what the future medical treatment is likely to cost. Another important factor is to have the worker's compensation doctors provided a future treatment plan with cost projection. Medical expenses are paid according to and pursuant to the workers' compensation fee schedule. Worker's compensation lawyers are very helpful in establishing what exposures there are for future medical treatment. If the worker's compensation claim has been designated catastrophic or if the worker's compensation claimant is eligible for Medicare, then a Medicare Set Aside is normally required. The settlement negotiations become very complicated and certainly require the advice of a good worker's compensation attorney whenever a Medicare Set Aside (MSA) is required. (3)Permanent Partial Disability Benefits (PPD): These benefits are based on the permanent partial disability rating that the worker's compensation doctors assign. The permanent partial disability rating normally uses the American Medical Association (AMA) Guidelines for evaluating permanent impairment ratings. Once the permanent partial disability rating is established, then seasoned worker's compensation attorneys can calculate the permanent partial disability benefits (PPD) based on the formula provided in the Worker's Compensation Act [comp rate x PPD rating x the number of weeks the statute assigns to the injured part of the body used in the rating]. Good worker's compensation lawyers can even help you obtain a one time Claimant Independent Medical Examination (IME) to negotiate a higher permanent partial disability rating (PPD rating) and benefit.
Nothing replaces consulting an experienced worker's compensation attorney for a free consultation. Knowing the value of the case is only half the battle because you still need a seasoned worker's compensation lawyer to protect your rights, litigate when necessary, and to negotiate a fair settlement. For your free consultation call The Griffin Law Firm at 866-847-6545 or submit your case to the following link: [ FREE CONSULTATION]