The Massachusetts workers’ compensation attorneys at Kantrovitz & Associates help injured employees obtain temporary total disability benefits. We know that any time out of work can have drastic consequences for your family and your future. That is why we are dedicated to expediting the process of obtaining needed benefits while you are out of work. Kantrovitz & Associates is proud to serve injured workers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island.
Temporary Total Disability Benefits
“Temporary total disability” means a non-permanent job-related injury that leaves you unable to work for six or more days. The work days may be full-time or part-time and need not be consecutive. A determination of temporary total disability takes into account the worker’s age, training, and experience. Under Massachusetts workers’ compensation law, temporarily disabled workers are eligible for benefits for up to 156 weeks or 3 years. However, benefits begin on the sixth day of incapacity unless the worker is disabled for 21 days or more.
Jobs That Commonly Cause Temporary Total Disability
Massachusetts workers experience temporary total disability as a result of accidents related to many types of work, including:
- Cargo loading
- Vehicle operation
- Operating machinery
- Working with chemicals
- Use of power, cutting tools
- Work in agricultural, processing plants
Severe physical injuries to the skeleton or muscles can put a person out of work for years. The diagnosis at the time of injury will indicate whether the disability is temporary or permanent.
Calculation of Temporary Total Disability Benefits
Temporary total disability benefits will be calculated at 60 percent of your gross average weekly wage. Your average weekly wage is equivalent to your earnings during the 12 months immediately before the injury, divided by 52 weeks. This amount may change if:
- You were employed for less than 52 weeks (divide by relevant weeks of work)
- You lost more than two weeks of work during the period (divide by remaining weeks)
Other exceptions may be subject to the following guidelines:
- Short time of employment may require average weekly wage earned by co-worker
- If no co-worker at same job, determine same class of employment in same district
- If more than one employer, consider total earnings from employers and insurers
Under Massachusetts General Laws, any week in which the employee earned less than $5 in wages is counted as time “lost” and is excluded in calculating the average weekly wage. The only exception is for employees whose normal work time amounts to less than 15 hours per week.
Benefits Included in Total Temporary Disability Amount
With few exceptions, total temporary disability benefits include:
- Reasonable and necessary medical expenses
- Hospital, physician, prescription medication costs
- Reimbursement for mileage/travel to and from treatment
- Payment for other health care providers and prosthetic devices
- Difference between workers’ compensation and provider’s full rate
Medical benefits are determined by a utilization review board. Even if the board approves the treatment as “reasonable” and “necessary,” insurers can still deny payment for these costs.
Recover Benefits or Appeal a Denial
If a workplace injury has rendered you temporarily disabled, the Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyers at Kantrovitz & Associates can help. We have over almost 30 years’ experience obtaining temporary total disability benefits for injured workers. Whether you are filing a claim or appealing a denial, we provide invaluable representation. We have made a dramatic difference in success for injured workers throughout Boston, Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Suffolk, Plymouth, and Merrimack Valley. Call (800) 367-0871 today for a free consultation or contact us online.