Wage Payments


If your injury prevents you from working, you may qualify for lost-wage compensation. In most cases, this is a percentage of your average weekly wage (AWW), which is based on the wages you earned during the 52 full weeks prior to your accident.

Lost-wage compensation is subject to a seven-day waiting period. This means that for the first seven calendar days of your claim, you will not be paid immediately. If you are out of work for more than 14 calendar days, you will then be paid for the seven-day waiting period. Your first wage-compensation check should be issued within 15 days after your employer is notified of your injury.

Keep in mind that there is a minimum and maximum weekly benefit mandated by the state. This number depends on your date of accident and changes periodically, so check with your adjustor.

Below are the most common types of lost-wage compensation benefits and the methods used to calculate them. If your claim is classified in one of the categories below, your benefits will generally be paid as described. Because Arkansas workers’ comp law provides for many different scenarios, this is not an all-inclusive list. Depending on your situation, your claim may provide you with different benefits.

Temporary Total Disability

This means you are completely disabled, but are expected to fully recover and return to work. In this instance, you will receive 66⅔ percent of your AWW until you return to work or reach maximum medical improvement. Benefits may continue in this category for up to 450 weeks.

Temporary Partial Disability

In this case, you are still limited by your injury, but are able to work in some capacity. If you return to work and your new job pays less than your previous one, you are entitled to temporary partial disability benefits. You will be paid 66⅔ percent of the difference between your AWW before your injury and your AWW after your injury.

Permanent Partial Disability

Normally, permanent partial disability means that you are permanently disabled, but still able to return to work in some capacity. The benefits you receive are based on the severity of your injury. Arkansas law lists dozens of different types of injuries and specifies the benefits for those injuries in terms of the number of weeks of compensation due.

Permanent partial disability benefits are paid at 75 percent of the temporary total disability rate. For example, if an injured worker has an AWW of $500 per week, the temporary total disability rate would be $333 (66⅔ percent of $500). The permanent partial disability rate would be 75 percent of the temporary total rate, or $250. A state-mandated minimum factors into this calculation as well.

Permanent Total Disability

This means that you are completely disabled as defined by state statute and are not able to return to work in any capacity. In this case, workers’ comp will generally pay you 66⅔ percent of your AWW until you reach the state-mandated maximum benefit, based on the date of your accident.

Death Benefits

If a worker dies as a result of a work-related accident, dependents may receive workers’ comp benefits. Families are eligible for a one-time funeral expense payment up to $6,000. A widowed spouse, with no dependent children, is usually entitled to 35 percent of the deceased worker’s AWW until death or remarriage. If there are also dependent children, the benefit rises to either 50 percent of the worker’s AWW or to the maximum compensation rate, depending on the number of children in the home. Other dependents may also be entitled to benefits as listed in Arkansas statute. Summit claims adjustors specially trained in these types of claims will work with the employer to determine what benefits are due.

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