Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits in Maryland workers’ compensation represent the compensation you are entitled to receive for the time you are out and completely unable to work. By their nature, they are temporary because eventually you will either be able to return to work or reach maximum medical improvement or both. The disability is total, because you are not able to work at all.
Calculating Temporary Total Disability Benefits
Temp Total Benefits are generally equal to two-thirds (2/3) of your average weekly wage. The average weekly wage is calculated by finding the average of your last 13 weeks of pay. There is, however, a maximum amount. This amount is equal to the state average weekly wage (SAWW). In 2013, the state average weekly wage is $990. This means, if you make over about $1400 per week, you will only receive $990. For all amounts below this, you will get 2/3 of your average weekly wage.
Workers’ Compensation is not meant to be a windfall situation. You are not able to get rich from temporary total disability benefits. In fact, in that you will not receive the full amount of your salary, workers’ comp temporary benefits may cause you some level of financial hardship. Being in a situation where you need workers’ compensation benefits is NOT a good situation.
The Employer or Insurance Company Contested the Injury
One advantage to the workers’ comp process is there are no attorneys’ fees on TTD benefits, IF the employer or employer’s insurance company does not contest the injury (filing issues). If they do file issues with regard to causation, the 10% you pay in attorneys fees is not the biggest problem. You must then prove that the injury was work related. You must prove that it’s that particular injury that prevents you from working. This is done via a workers’ comp hearing. The process is usually fairly quick.
When will I get paid my Workers’ Comp TTD Benefits
After the claim gets filed, the WCC establishes a consideration date. The employer must file issues before this date unless they want the commission to decide the case based on the info available, ie. the claim. The consideration date is approximately three weeks from the receipt of the claim. Approximately one month after the consideration date, assuming there are no issues with the case, the claimant will receive their TTD benefits. Therefore, in total, the TTD benefits come approximately 6-8 weeks after the claim is filed.
If TTD is uncontested, the MD Workers’ Comp Lawyer does not get paid. If it is contested, there will be an atty fee.
If you reach MMI, or Maximum Medical Improvement, you will no longer receive temporary total disability. At that point, you either get permanent partial disability, permanent total disability, or you will return to work in full and without further pain.
Permanent Partial Disability Benefits
TTD benefits are inadequate to make up for an injury that will be a lasting injury. If you have an injury that will go on after you return to work, get a new job, or get retrained for other employment – even if the lasting aspect of the injury is slight – you need to get PPD benefits. It is simply the only way in the workers’ comp process, to get fully compensated for you work related injuries. It doesn’t make you a malingerer, dishonest, or a burden to your employer. They have insurance that compensates you for this very situation.