Permanent Partial Disability Benefits
Compassionate Permanent Partial Disability Lawyer in Washington State Helps Clients Pursue Maximum Financial Benefits from Workers’ Compensation in King County, Lewis County, Pierce County, Thurston County, and Throughout WA
Once you have finished treating a workplace injury or an occupational disease, you may be left with some permanent impairment to the body part or bodily function that was affected by the injury or disease. When this impairment does not render you incapable of returning to gainful employment, you may still be entitled to receive financial recovery from the Washington state workers’ compensation system in the form of disability benefits. A permanent partial disability lawyer in Washington state from Smith Duran Law can help you fight to maximize your award.
Our attorneys are dedicated to pursuing measurable results for our clients after they have suffered permanent consequences from a work injury or occupational disease. We take the time to understand the physical and emotional consequences that you experience due to permanent impairment or disability. We vigorously advocate for the rights of hard-working individuals across Washington state, fighting back to prevent L&I and employers from trying to minimize workers’ injuries or the benefits they are entitled to under state workers’ compensation laws.
If you have sustained a permanent impairment to a body part due to a work injury or occupational illness, you may be entitled to receive disability payments. Reach out to Smith Duran Law to speak with a permanent partial disability lawyer in Washington state about your rights to receive benefits for your impairment.
What is Permanent Partial Disability Benefits?
In the Washington state workers’ compensation system, permanent partial disability benefits may be awarded to a worker who sustains a permanent impairment to or loss of function in one or more parts of their body but retains the ability to return to some form of gainful employment. Permanent partial disability benefits are intended to compensate a worker for both the loss of earning power and loss of quality of life caused by the impairment or loss of function.
To be eligible for permanent partial disability benefits, a worker must have completed their medical treatment and have their attending provider declare the workers’ work injury or occupational disease stabilized. The attending provider or an independent medical examiner must then examine the worker to calculate a permanent partial disability rating, which is used to calculate the worker’s benefits.
Once a worker is awarded permanent partial disability benefits, their wage loss replacement and medical benefits will be terminated and their workers’ compensation claim closed. If the worker requires future medical treatment for their work injury or occupational disease, they will need to petition to reopen their claim.
How Are Permanent Partial Disability Benefits Calculated?
Permanent partial disability benefit awards are determined by a schedule of awards. The schedule lists various parts of the body or organ systems, including the spine, cardiovascular system, respiratory system, skin, digestive tract, urinary tract, as well as speech or mental function. The severity of the impairment or loss of function in the body part or system corresponds to a percentage of total body impairment. The schedule then awards a dollar amount based on the percentage of total body impairment. Additionally, the schedule lists various award amounts for amputation of extremities or the loss of vision or hearing. Permanent partial disability benefit awards can range from as little as a few thousand dollars to over $200,000 for widespread impairments not rising to the level of total body impairment.
What Can a Permanent Partial Disability Lawyer in Washington State from Smith Duran Law Do to Assist You in Maximizing Your Compensation?
Pursuing disability benefits after suffering an impairment to a body part or body function can often be one of the most complex aspects of a workers’ compensation case. You need experienced legal representation to ensure that your impairment is recognized by L&I and that you get the full amount of compensation you are entitled to under workers’ comp law. Turn to a permanent partial disability lawyer in Washington state from Smith Duran Law who can help you by:
- Gathering objective evidence to support your claimed impairments, including medical records, exam reports, or provider notes
- Working with your treating medical providers to develop a persuasive case
- Pursuing your legal options when L&I denies your claim for disability benefits or finds a lower impairment than you believe you have, including protesting the L&I decision or filing an appeal with the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals
Contact Smith Duran Law for a Free Case Evaluation to Go Over Your Claim with Our Permanent Partial Disability Lawyer in Washington State
If you believe you may have sustained a permanent impairment because of a work injury or occupational disease, contact Smith Duran Law for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn more about how a permanent partial disability lawyer in Washington state can assist you with securing the financial compensation you deserve.
Frequently Asked Questions about Permanent Partial Disability in Washington State
Once you are awarded permanent partial disability benefits, your workers’ compensation claim will typically be closed, which will terminate your medical benefits or wage loss replacement benefits. If you believe you require additional medical benefits or wage loss replacement because your original work injury or occupational disease has been aggravated or has worsened, you will need to petition to reopen your workers’ comp claim to secure those additional benefits.
For smaller permanent partial disability benefit awards, usually less than three times the average monthly wage in Washington state, you will likely receive a one-time lump sum payment. For larger disability awards, payments may be made as a lump sum or regular installments with an upfront down payment. A permanent partial disability lawyer in Washington state can help you evaluate your personal financial needs and negotiate a payment structure that provides for those needs.
The Department of Labor and Industries manages claims for injuries at work. You are entitled to money for lost wages, medical treatment, vocational retraining, loss of body function, and in some cases a pensionLEARN MORE
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