Wage Payments

Georgia

If your injury prevents you from working, you may qualify for lost-wage compensation. The amount of money you receive is based on the severity of your injury. In most cases it is a percentage of your average weekly wage (AWW), which is based on the wages you earned during the 13 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 21 calendar days, you will then be paid for the seven-day waiting period. If you qualify for wage benefits, you should receive your first check within 21 days of your injury.
Keep in mind that there is a maximum weekly benefit mandated by the state. This number depends on the date of your accident and changes periodically, so check with your adjustor.

Below are the most common types of wage benefits and the methods used to calculate them. If your claim is classified in one of the categories below, your benefits will be paid as described. Because Georgia’s 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 ⅔ of your AWW. For a non-catastrophic injury, you may receive benefits in this category for up to 400 weeks. In cases of catastrophic injuries (as defined by state law), benefits may continue indefinitely.

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, but your new job pays less than your previous one, you are entitled to temporary partial disability benefits. You will be paid ⅔ of the difference between your AWW before your injury and your AWW after your injury. Temporary partial disability benefits will be paid for a maximum of 350 weeks from the date of your accident.

Permanent Partial Disability

Normally, permanent partial disability means that you are permanently disabled, but still able to return to work in some capacity. Your treating physician will assign you a disability rating, based on American Medical Association Guidelines. This rating will be used to calculate your disability benefit. The benefits you receive are based on the severity of your injury. Georgia law lists dozens of different types of injuries and specifies the benefits due for each of these in terms of the number of weeks of compensation due.

Permanent Total Disability

Permanent total disability is usually the result of a “catastrophic injury,” as defined by state law. It means that, according to your authorized physician, you are completely disabled, and are not able to return to work in any capacity. In this instance, you will be paid ⅔ of your AWW until your condition changes for the better. In the event of a catastrophic injury, you may also be entitled to rehabilitation benefits.

Death Benefits

If a worker dies as a result of a work-related accident, dependents may receive workers’ comp benefits. These are normally ⅔ of the workers’ AWW, up to the maximum allowed by Georgia law. A one-time funeral expense may also be paid up to $7,500. 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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