Petrillo: Many times in the workers’ comp world, we hear the word temporary disability benefits or temporary total disability benefits. What are they?
Schulman: Well, if you get injured and your claim is reported and it’s processed and it’s opened up and it’s admitted injury where there’s no dispute about the injury, you’re entitled to, as one of the benefits, loss wage benefits. So if you go to the doctor and your injury is significant enough that the doctor does not believe you’ll be able to perform your job duties, he’ll say to the injured worker, you’re supposed to remain out of work for a period of time, whether it’s two weeks, a month. And then the doctor will reconsider that determination down the road as the doctor reevaluates the injured worker. If you are out of work for more than seven days, you are entitled to lost wage benefits, and that gets paid for the entire time you’re out of work.
So for instance, if on day eight, you’re still out of work, you’re lost wage benefits will begin retroactive to the day of your injury, the first day you’re out of work and they will continue until such time the doctor says you’re able to return to work. And how you get paid is you get paid at 70% of your average weekly wages. So if you make $100, the example I always use to explain it to my clients is if you make $100 a week, you’ll get a check from workers’ comp for $70, 70%. There’s no taxes that get taken out of that. And it’s almost equivalent to your regular paycheck. If you get paid $100 a week, unless your taxes that get taken out each week, deducted from your paycheck, it comes to about the same 70%.
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