What is a Temporary Total Disability (TTD)?
Under workers’ compensation benefits, there are many types of disability including temporary total disability, permanent partial disability, and permanent total disability. Temporary total disability describes a work-related injury or illness that renders an employee totally unable to temporarily return to their former position of employment. In other words, the worker’s injury prevents them from returning to work at this point although it is anticipated that the condition is temporary and the worker will be able to return to their job at some point in the foreseeable future.
In the meantime, the worker can receive compensation as a percentage of their weekly wages as a wage replacement benefit until the return to work is medically possible. If you have a temporary total disability resulting from a work injury or illness, you should speak to an experienced Toledo workers’ compensation attorney from Schaffer & Associates to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
How is Temporary Total Disability Determined?
To prove you are totally disabled for a temporary amount of time, you must sign and submit the Request for Temporary Total Compensation or equivalent form. Your treating physician will be required to submit a Physician’s Report of Workability (or equivalent form). You must essentially show that due to your work-related injury or illness, you cannot return to your former position of employment.
What Workers Compensation Benefits are Available for a Temporary Total Disability?
Either the state of Ohio (BWC) or your self-insuring employer will base your compensation on your past earnings. For the first 12 weeks you are off work, compensation will be paid based on your full weekly wage. This is calculated using your earnings during either the week prior to the injury or the 6 weeks prior to the injury. After 12 weeks, compensation will be paid based on your average weekly wages which requires you to provide a full 52 weeks of proof of your earnings before the date of your work-related injury. This “proof” can be in the form of W2s, wage statements, pay stubs, or a Wages-IW Injured from your employer.
During the first three months of missed work, your temporary total disability should be paid at 72 percent of your full weekly wages. After the first three months (12 weeks) of missed work, you would receive a temporary total disability amount that is 66 2/3 of your average weekly wages.
Can You Receive Social Security Disability and TTD?
Workers’ Compensation is a state-run program, while Social Security Disability is a federal program. In many cases, you may be able to receive both workers’ compensation and Social Security disability benefits if you qualify for both. If you cannot work for at least 12 months or have a condition that is expected to result in your death, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits.
However, if you can still work and earn a living, your claim would be denied because SSA doesn’t award partial disability. That being said, you are allowed a “trial work period” while on SSDI. During the 36-month extended period of eligibility, you may not may more than $1,350 per month (as of 2022) and still draw Social Security Disability benefits. The same is true if you opt to draw regular Social Security benefits early—you are not allowed to make more than $1,580 per month, or your SS check will be reduced by $1 for each $2 you earn above that amount.
You could conceivably have been working while drawing either SSDI or SS. If you were injured on the job, you would be entitled to worker’s compensation temporary total disability benefits even if you are receiving SSDI or SS benefits. However, it is important to note that the total income you receive from Workers’ Compensation and SSDI cannot be more than 80 percent of your previous income and that the criteria used to determine workers’ compensation temporary total disability and disability for SSDI are very different.
How Long Does Temporary Total Disability Last?
Your workers’ compensation TTD benefits will end when any of the following occur:
- You have returned to work, whether full-time or part-time, either for your original employer or for any other employer.
- You have reached maximum medical improvement.
- Your employer has provided work that is within your restrictions outlined by your doctor.
- You are incarcerated.
Even if you are no longer eligible to receive temporary total disability benefits, you could potentially be entitled to receive another type of workers’ compensation benefits.
What About Workers’ Compensation Settlements and Temporary Total Disability?
In some cases, you might prefer to settle your workers’ compensation claim for a lump sum rather than weekly checks. If you decide to go this route, you must have an experienced Ohio workers’ compensation attorney by your side during the settlement negotiations. Otherwise, you might not receive the actual value of your claim. While this is important for a temporary total disability, it is even more critical in a permanent total disability. Estimating the value of a settlement is much more complex if you are permanently and totally disabled since your weekly benefits could conceivably continue for decades.
How Can an Experienced Workers’ Compensation Attorney from Schaffer & Associates Help?
There are many reasons it can be highly beneficial to have an experienced Toledo, OH workers’ compensation attorney by your side if you are filing for temporary total disability. There are many instances where a single mistake could prevent you from getting the benefits you need and deserve. The attorneys at Schaffer & Associates, LPA, have the best interests of our clients at heart from the start of the case until it concludes. We will fight for you and your family, ensuring your rights and your future are adequately protected. Contact Schaffer & Associates, LPA, today for a free consultation.