Temporary Total Disability Benefits under Georgia Workers’ Compensation can provide a predictable stream of income to you and your family while you are getting medical care and recuperating from an on-the-job injury or illness.
Call S. Burke Law at 404-842-7838 for help from a workers’ compensation lawyer.
Qualifying for Temporary Total Disability Benefits under Georgia Workers’ Compensation
You must meet all of these requirements to get Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits:
- You must be working at a job that is eligible for Georgia Workers’ Compensation Benefits at the time of your injury or illness.
- You must have sustained an on-the-job injury or illness that meets the requirements for Workers’ Compensation benefits.
- You must obtain your medical treatment from an approved provider. Your employer maintains a list of the approved providers. You generally cannot go to your own doctor, and you must choose an approved provider to get care for your work injury.
- You must be unable to work at all because of the injury or illness. Your inability to work can be because you are going through medical treatment or recuperating from the injury, illness, or medical procedures. In some cases, your doctor might expect that you will never be able to work again. Regardless of this fact, Georgia Workers’ Compensation will award you “temporary” benefits.
When You Can Get Temporary Total Disability Benefits
You can get up to 400 weeks of Temporary Total Disability (TTD) checks beginning with the date of your non-catastrophic injury or illness. You must be unable to work at all for the benefits to continue.
If your doctor releases you to go back to work, even on light duty or reduced hours, you no longer qualify for TTD checks. At that point, you might qualify for Temporary Partial Disability Benefits.
Collecting Multiple Benefits
Georgia Workers’ Compensation will only pay you one category of benefits at a time. You cannot, for example, collect at the same time both Temporary Partial Disability benefits for having to work fewer hours after your injury or illness and Permanent Partial Disability benefits for a permanent disability you now have because of the injury or illness.
Calculating Temporary Total Disability Benefits under Georgia’s Workers’ Compensation
Temporary Total Disability Benefits will pay two-thirds of your average weekly income as of the time of your injury or illness. Let’s say that you were working 40 hours a week and earning $25 an hour. You earned gross wages of $1,000 a week. Your TTD benefits will be two-thirds of that, for $667 a week.
Catastrophic Injuries and Temporary Total Disability Benefits
There is no limit to the number of weeks that you can receive TTD benefits for a catastrophic work-related injury or illness.
Since Georgia Worker’s Compensation does not have a category called “Permanent Total Disability Benefits,” they just keep paying you “Temporary Total Disability Benefits” even after the 400 weeks runs for a catastrophic injury or illness, as long as the condition prevents you from working at all.
If you can eventually return to work, but at reduced hours or lower pay, your TTD benefits will cease. You will then be eligible for Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) Benefits for up to 350 weeks from the date of the injury or illness. After the TPD benefits end, you can start getting Permanent Partial Disability Benefits, if you qualify at that time.
What Happens When Your Temporary Total Disability Benefits End
In cases involving non-catastrophic injuries or illnesses, your Temporary Total Disability benefits will stop 400 weeks after the date of your injury or illness. You cannot get Temporary Partial Disability checks then, because they stop 350 weeks after injury or illness.
Your only option after 400 weeks is to seek a disability rating from your authorized treating physician. These ratings are not automatic. Physicians do not assign a disability rating to every injury or illness.
You might be eligible for benefits beyond the 400 weeks for a non-catastrophic work-related injury or illness if your treating physician finds that your current medical condition meets the AMA Guidelines for a permanent disability.
If so, then your treating doctor will follow a mathematical formula using your disability rating, the Temporary Total Disability rate, and the number of weeks as determined under Georgia law, to calculate the amount of your Permanent Partial Disability benefits.
Getting Legal Help for Your Temporary Total Disability Benefits Claim
You might not be sure about whether you qualify for Temporary Total Disability Benefits or another type of Georgia Workers’ Compensation benefits. You do not have to figure this out for yourself. You should get to focus on getting your health back.
Give S. Burke Law a call at 404-842-7838 for your free consultation to evaluate your benefits claim. There are no legal fees until you get compensation.