Workers compensation provides injured workers with wage compensation and medical care until they are physically able to return to work. It is paid through their employer for physical or mental trauma that occurred from a specific incident rather than progressive deterioration.
Wage compensation is based upon the weekly wage of the worker at the time of injury and pays a tax-free percentage of pre-injury wages. Immediate and rehabilitative medical care are both provided at no cost upon approval of a claim.
However, there are rules and restrictions that must be considered when filing for workers compensation in Maryland.
What Are the Procedures for Filing a Workers Comp Claim in Maryland?
When an employee is hurt on the job, it must be immediately reported to their supervisor. The time and location of the incident, the nature of the action that caused the injury, as well as any witnesses should be provided to corroborate the veracity of the claim if necessary.
Immediate medical care must be provided to the injured employee if needed. The employer must then file a claim with the Maryland Workers compensation Commission within 7 days of the incident if the employee is unable to return to work.
What Are the Restrictions on Workers Comp Claims in Maryland?
A qualifying injury must have occurred during paid working hours in the course of employment. Simply being hurt at the job site may not qualify an employee for benefits. Injuries resulting from intoxication, deliberate actions, or illegal activities will not be covered in workers compensation claims.
Covered physical injuries must be the result of a single incident and psychological difficulties from a single traumatic event, workplace diseases that are contracted from long term exposure to chemical agents at the job site are eligible for benefits.
What Are the Restrictions on Workers Comp Wage Benefits in Maryland?
Wage benefits will vary according to the severity of an injury and are classified differently according to each individual claim.
Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
This classification covers injuries that leave a worker unable to work at all for a limited healing period. If the worker misses less than 14 days of work, they will not be provided with wage compensation for the first three days of missed work. If the employee is still injured after 14 days, the temporary penalty will be rescinded and they will receive payment for the first three days along with future payments.
TTD provides 2/3 of the employees gross wages at the time of the injury. However, the weekly wage must not exceed the Maryland median income ($1094 as of January 2018), so the maximum weekly benefit would be $729 based on this figure.
Temporary Partial Disability
These benefits are provided as supplements for workers who can return to work at limited capacity during healing. If the worker must perform duties at lower pay, workers comp will provide benefits equal to 50 percent of the differences between the current and pre-injury wages, subject to the same median income restrictions as TTD benefits.
Workers comp also provides a variety of Permanent Total and Permanent Partial Disability as well as death benefits, depending on the factors of individual claims.
While the state of Maryland offers appeals and arbitration for injured workers whose claims have been denied, it helps to have the guidance of a workers comp lawyer like Annunziata Albert at a time of special vulnerability to get the benefits that all injured workers deserve.