Q: What qualifies as a permanent disability in a workers’ compensation case?

You may be deemed permanently and totally disabled if your permanent impairment involves more than one body part OR your impacts more than 50% of your back.

If you are permanently and totally disabled after a workplace accident, you may be entitled to permanent and total disability benefits. You simply must show that you are unable to work the job you had when you were injured (or any other job reasonably available to you in the current economy).


Q: What’s the difference between permanent and temporary disability workers’ compensation benefits?

Permanent and total disability benefits (see above) are meant to cover long-term loss of work and can be awarded for a maximum of 500 weeks. Meanwhile, temporary disability benefits typically last for a much shorter time and only cover medical bills, missed wages, and short-term disability aids. Any temporary partial or temporary total benefits you received will be subtracted from your total disability amount, which is generally paid in a lump sum.


Q: How is Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI) determined?

Determining Maximum Medical Improvement is not straightforward. It can be challenging to initially gauge how long it will take you to reach your MMI.

A designated medical provider must make the call. Yet, medical professionals sometimes disagree about precisely WHEN a claimant reaches their maximum medical improvement.

It’s important to note that every workers’ compensation case is unique. The point of maximum medical improvement depends on:

  • Theperson involved
  • Injuries sustained
  • Response to treatment
  • Andpaceofrecovery

Q: Does MMI mean fully recovered?

No. Many people think a determination of MMI means they have fully recovered from the injuries
they sustained on the job. But this is not the case!

Some injuries lead to permanent physical or cognitive loss or chronic pain that can never be
fully recovered, no matter how much medical treatment or rehabilitation you receive. MMI only
confirms that the claimant is in stable condition and can safely assume there will be no
additional improvement.