If you suffer a work-related injury or illness in Pennsylvania, you likely qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. This may include temporary partial disability benefits, sometimes known as TPD. TPD is a type of lost wage benefit that helps you make ends meet if you cannot return to your full job duties immediately after a workplace accident.
The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act ensures employees have access to coverage that includes medical bills benefits and lost wage benefits. Almost all workers in Pennsylvania have workers’ compensation insurance provided by their employer. This includes full- and part-time workers. The coverage begins on the first day they work.
What Are Temporary Partial Disability Benefits?
In many cases, workers suffer injuries that prevent them from doing some of their job duties. However, they may be able to do other parts of their job or accept a “light duty” job from their employer. If your employer offers you this type of work and your doctor clears you to complete the “light duty” job, you must accept it, or your workers’ compensation lost wage benefits may be at risk.
If you cannot work at all or if your employer does not have a light duty position, you will receive total disability benefits. However, if you can return to a light duty position, you should qualify for partial disability benefits until you return to your full job duties.
An Example of Temporary Partial Disability Benefits
Imagine you hurt your foot at work. You have to have surgery and cannot walk on it for 12 weeks afterward. Your typical job duties require you to stand and walk much of the day, so you cannot return to your normal job duties. Your employer offers you a position that allows you to sit during the day and your doctor approves it.
However, the new temporary position pays less than your regular job. This is where temporary partial disability benefits come in. This type of lost wage benefit provides a portion of the difference between your regular pay and the wages from the light duty work.
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Qualifying for Partial Disability Benefits in Pittsburgh
You cannot receive any lost wage benefits until you miss at least seven days at work. Your benefits may begin on the eighth day. If you return to work on light duty the day following your accident, you will not begin to get pay for your difference in wages until day 8. If you miss more than 14 days of work — or spend more than 14 days on light duty — you will receive lost wage benefits for the first seven days you missed.
Each type of lost wage benefits has a maximum number of days you can continue to draw it without having your case reviewed to determine if you still qualify. The workers’ compensation insurance company may also try to negotiate a settlement with you instead of continuing to pay you for lost wages each week.
How Much Compensation Can I Get with TPD Benefits in Pennsylvania?
If you are drawing total disability lost wages, you will receive about two-thirds of your weekly wage, up to a set limit. The limit for injuries or illnesses occurring after January 1, 2019, is $1,049, according to the PA Department of Labor & Industry.
When it comes to partial disability, though, you cannot expect to get a full two-thirds of your regular wages. Instead, they calculate your payments by subtracting your current “light duty” wages from your regular wages. You will then receive about two-thirds of that difference through workers’ compensation.
Berger and Green Can Help You Understand Your Rights and Fight for Benefits
At Berger and Green, our workers’ compensation attorneys help Pittsburgh residents and those living in the nearby area get the benefits they deserve after a workplace injury or illness. We can help you appeal a denial or go up against an employer who does not believe your injuries occurred at work.
Let us review your case for free today. We will explain your rights and advocate for you as we navigate the process to get the full workers’ compensation benefits you deserve, whether that is a total disability, partial disability, or specific loss benefits.
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Talk to a Workers’ Compensation Attorney in Pittsburgh About Your Case Today
The lawyers at Berger and Green can help you fight for the workers’ compensation benefits you need and deserve based on the facts of your case. If you live in the Steel City, Allegheny County, or the greater Pittsburgh area, we are here for you.
Call 412-661-1400 now to discuss your case with a member of our team for free.