After a workplace injury, you could face many challenges, such as costly medical expenses, lost wages, and increased stress. When your injury results in a permanent disability, it can compound these effects.
If you can no longer do your job after a workplace incident, you might wonder if there are options for long-term financial compensation. Depending on your degree of disability, you might qualify for impairment income benefits as part of your worker compensation award.
What is impairment income?
Impairment income is a benefit that gives you a percentage of your pre-injury wages after your temporary benefits run out. To receive these benefits, a doctor must determine that further treatment will not improve your condition. The doctor then assigns an impairment rating based on your disability. Your employer’s insurance provider uses this number to determine your level of compensation.
How long does impairment income last?
Unlike temporary disability benefits, which can last up to 104 weeks, the duration of impairment income depends on your permanent impairment rating. Each percentage point equals a number of weeks, according to this formula:
- 1-10%: Two weeks
- 11-15%: Three weeks
- 16-20%: Four weeks
- 21% or more: Six weeks
If you have a rating of 6%, you can receive two weeks for each percentage point, for a total of 12 weeks of benefits.
The amount of wage replacement you can receive depends on the nature and extent of your injury. If you can no longer work because of a work-related injury, you could get a percentage of your pre-injury income in impairment income.