If you break your arm or sprain your ankle, you will need a fixed amount of time for recovery and then hopefully be able to get back to the same job you once worked. Even if you need disability pay while you recover, eventually, you should earn what you did before the job injury.
If you have a spinal cord injury, an amputation or a brain injury, you may have lasting or permanent symptoms that prevent you from doing this. Can you count on workers’ compensation to support you if you have permanent symptoms from a job-related medical condition?
There are special benefits for long-term conditions
The doctor coordinating your treatment may determine that you have a permanent condition that will not fully heal. If you have lasting symptoms, they can produce a report regarding the lasting limitations the condition may impose on your job functions. Their assessment of your condition will influence what benefits you receive.
If you have to take a lower-paying job, you may be able to receive permanent partial disability benefits. If you have to retire early because of your condition, you may qualify for permanent total disability benefits. Although you may not receive comprehensive medical treatment anymore once you achieve maximum medical improvement for your condition, certain ongoing care, like pain management and treatment for flare-ups, may still be available to you.
Understanding the rules that govern permanent injuries can help those who need workers’ compensation benefits to replace their lost wages and cover their costs for medical treatment.