How are Benefits Paid for Workers Compensation?

If you are injured on the job, and work in a field and for a company that participates in workers compensation programs, you may be entitled to workers compensation benefits because of a work related injury.  Workers compensation is typically paid out from companies or insurance agencies working on behalf of companies, to injured and eligible employees.   Workers compensation is determined, and subsequent benefits paid, based on a variety of factors.  In particular, how your workers compensation benefits will be paid depends largely on the nature of your injury. 

Types of Workers Compensation Benefits

  • Temporary Total Disability - If you are unable to work in some form of gainful employment for a temporary period, you may have benefits paid to you for the duration of your temporary disability, while you seek medical attention and rehabilitation. 
  • Permanent Total Disability - If you are unable to work in some form of gainful employment permanently, because you have lost sight, hearing, or the use of both arms, hands, legs, and/or feet you may receive long-term benefits. 
  • Permanent Partial Scheduled Disability - If you have lost a limb or some other body part, you may receive long-term compensation for your injury based upon some predetermined schedule. 
  • Permanent Partial General Disability - If you are seriously injured on the job, you may also be compensated on a long-term basis, but in this instance it will be defined as payment for a particular number of weeks.  For example, you may receive workers compensation for as much as 400 weeks, depending on your particular arrangement. 
  • Benefits for Survivors - If you are the spouse or dependent of someone who was killed on the job, you may be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits over a specified period of time.  You may also be eligible for benefits to cover funeral and/or burial expenses. 


Even if you are eligible to receive workers compensation benefits based on any of these examples, remember that what you are paid, and how benefits are applied varies considerably depending on:

  • Your state and its laws
  • Your company and its policies
  • Your specific case, injury, and eligibility

Also, each state may put a cap on the total amount that can be paid in a workers compensation case.  For example, you may have a permanent disability but only be able to collect $100,000 over the rest of your lifetime based upon your injury and your state’s caps. 

Getting Help

If you have additional questions about how workers compensation benefits are paid, you may want to consider consulting with an attorney about your specific rights. An attorney can help you to not only understand what workers compensation benefits you are entitled to, but can also help you in filing the claim necessary to collect those benefits.

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