What Is the Difference Between Temporary and Permanent Disability Benefits in a Vermont Workers’ Compensation Case?
After suffering a work-related injury in Vermont, you can recover financial compensation through a workers’ compensation claim. How much you recover as workers’ compensation benefits depends on, among other things, including the severity of your injury. Two types of workers’ compensation benefits you may be entitled to, depending on the seriousness of your injury, are temporary and permanent disability benefits. It is crucial that you understand the difference between temporary and permanent disability benefits. This article discusses the difference between temporary and permanent disability benefits in a Vermont workers’ compensation case.
Temporary Disability Benefits
A work-related injury can affect your ability to perform your work for a limited period. For some time, you may be unable to work at all due to your injury or may return to work in a different capacity due to your injury. In such a case, you may be eligible to recover temporary disability benefits. If you cannot temporarily work at all, you may be eligible to recover temporary total disability (TTD) benefits. On the other hand, if you can work but not in your previous capacity, you may be eligible to recover temporary partial disability (TPD) benefits.
Vermont has a time limit for how long an injured worker can collect TPD or TTD benefits. Generally, these benefits cease once you have reached “maximum medical improvement (MMI)” or resumed work, whichever happens first. Maximum medical improvement is the stage where your condition is not expected to improve with or without further treatment.
With temporary disability benefits, injured employees receive a certain percentage of their original income. In Vermont, TTD benefits are two-thirds of an employee’s average weekly gross wages. On the other hand, TPD benefits are two-thirds of the difference between a worker’s average gross wages before and after their injury.
Permanent Disability Benefits
Permanent disability benefits are paid to employees who suffer a disability that permanently impairs their ability to work. There are two types of permanent disabilities. There are those that impair a worker’s ability to work but don’t completely disable them. These are called permanent partial disabilities. A worker who suffers a permanent partial disability can work in some capacity. Workers with permanent partial disabilities are eligible to recover permanent partial disability benefits. The second type of permanent disability is called permanent total disability. An individual with a permanent total disability cannot work in any capacity. An employee who suffers a permanent total disability is entitled to recover permanent total disability benefits.
Vermont law outlines six types of injuries that automatically qualify a worker for permanent total disability benefits. These injuries are;
- Loss of a hand and foot
- Permanent loss of sight in both eyes
- Loss of both feet
- Loss of both hands
- A spine injury that causes paralysis in both legs or arms or one leg and one arm
- A head injury that causes cognitive, physical, or psychiatric disabilities.
If you don’t qualify for PTD benefits automatically, you still may prove PTD if you can no longer perform “regular, gainful work.”
The calculation of PTD and PPD benefits is based on the impairment rating, the severity of the injury, and the impact on the workers’ ability to work.
Contact a Vermont Workers’ Compensation Attorney
To get help with your workers’ compensation case, contact our qualified Vermont workers’ compensation attorney at Sluka Law PLC.