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What are disability ratings in workers’ compensation?

On Behalf of | Jun 3, 2024 | Workers Rights

Your disability rating will determine your wage benefits and how long they will last if you suffer significant injuries in a workplace accident that prevent you from performing your job temporarily or permanently. Simply put, a disability rating is a percentage assigned to the extent of your injuries.

The rating ranges from 0% to 100% and measures how much your injury affects your ability to work. Some examples of qualifying disabilities include physical injuries, medical conditions and psychological issues resulting from a traumatic workplace event. 

A higher disability rating means a more severe injury and a greater impact on your ability to work. This will be reflected in the wage benefits you are entitled to receive under workers’ compensation.

How is the rating determined?

Your disability rating is assessed after your condition has stabilized and you have reached maximum medical improvement, where further medical intervention is unlikely to result in any significant changes for the better.

A doctor will evaluate your impairment using established medical guidelines. Your age, occupation and the date of injury are among the factors that will weigh in the final disability rating.

There could be disputes and adjustments

Sometimes, there may be disagreements about the disability rating due to factors like discrepancies in the documentation, changes in condition or even administrative errors. In such cases, the affected worker or employer can request a review of the disability rating by the Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC).

Understanding how disability ratings work, their impact on your benefits and what conditions qualify as disabilities is crucial to your workers’ compensation claim. It will ensure you receive proper support for your workplace injuries. Seeking legal assistance can also help provide personalized guidance and protect your rights as an injured worker.