Any employee who sustains an on-the-job injury in West Virginia should be able to recover various types of compensation for their losses. Not only does this include full coverage of all medical expenses, but this also includes the replacement of lost wages. However, will you receive full pay if you sustain and are unable to work for an extended period of time?
Temporary Total Disability
Any employee who cannot work after sustaining an on-the-job injury should be entitled to temporary total disability benefits. These benefits equal two-thirds of a worker’s average weekly wage, subject to a cap set in place under West Virginia law.
Temporary total disability benefits are paid until the employee is able to return to work or until the employee reaches what is considered maximum medical improvement (MMI), which is the point where the condition is not likely to improve any further with medical treatment. TTD benefits cannot be paid for more than 104 weeks (two years).
Temporary Partial Disability
If an employee is able to work, but they have sustained a disability that requires them to perform a different kind of job that pays less money, workers’ compensation will pay two-thirds of the difference between the wage at the new job compared to the wage the individual was earning at their previous job.
Permanent Partial Disability
If a worker is found to have a permanent disability after they have reached maximum medical improvement, they will be paid additional compensation based on the percentage of disability assigned to them by a physician. Permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits in West Virginia will cover two-thirds of an individual’s average weekly wage, again subject to a maximum amount. For every percentage of disability an individual has sustained, they will receive four weeks of payment. The percentage of disability will depend on the severity of the injury, as determined by the doctor.
Permanent Total Disability
If an individual has sustained a permanent disability that is severe enough, they may be able to receive permanent total disability payments. There are certain disabilities that are presumed to be permanent and total, including the following:
- The loss of both eyes or the loss of sight in both eyes.
- The loss of both feet or the loss of use of both feet.
- The loss of both hands or the loss of use of both hands.
- The loss of one hand and one foot, or the loss of use of one hand and one foot.
There are other disabilities that may qualify an employee for permanent total disability benefits, and we strongly encourage you to speak to a skilled work injury lawyer in Morgantown, WV who can help you through this process.
Workers’ compensation insurance carriers and employers in West Virginia may deny a claim or refuse to offer a fair amount of income replacement after an on-the-job injury. Even though wage replacement may not fully cover your previous income, you need these benefits to make ends meet. An attorney will investigate the injury, handle all negotiations with insurance carriers, and fully prepare your case for the appeals or trial process if necessary.
Jeffery Robinette was admitted to practice law in 1991 and is licensed in all levels of state and federal trial courts in West Virginia. Mr. Robinette is also licensed in all state and federal appeals courts in West Virginia and the United States Supreme Court. As a National Board Certified Trial Attorney who has handled hundreds of motor vehicle, injury, and construction defect claims and a leading author on insurance claims settlement issues and difficulties in West Virginia, Jeff Robinette is uniquely qualified to represent your best interest.