Tuesday, March 13, 2007

What is your comp rate?

The maximum temporary compensation rate in Colorado varies from year to year and is usually adjusted around July 1st. So if you are hurt on the job and are wondering what is the rate you will be paid (assuming they are not contesting it or asserting some sort of reduction or loss of benefits) it is two-thirds of your gross or total pay before deductions up to a top rate of $719.74 (for anyone earning $1079.01 or more). So if you make $600 a week then $400 a week (paid biweekly) would be your rate for temporary benefits if you cannot work or are unable to be accomodated with the restrictions imposed by the authorized treating physician. If you are earning $450 a week then $300 a week is the comp rate so it all depends on your gross pay. These benefits are not taxable. Seems simple enough right? Well what if the employer terminated you after your injury and says its your fault. It can take a hearing to see if you are entitled to benefits. Or, if the employer claims you violated a safety rule...if true it can reduce your benefits in half! If you are receiving Social Security disability or retirement benefits this also may reduce your workers comp benefits. However if you were working two jobs that may increase your benefits. Another factor is if you are under 21 years of age...it is quite possible your rate may be treated at the highest rate possible even if you were working part time. Colorado seemed to realize that if a minor is hurt and perhaps has an injury that lasts long term there should be a special way to calculate his benefits. If you are injured on the job your average weekly wage is usually what is used to calculate any compensation but what is your average pay rate? Many times the insurance and employer calculate it one way when it could be higher. It is best to review this carefully as it can result in a difference of several thousand dollars more due a person which if not pursued is a true loss. For example, your employer may turn in your pay as being your base rate and forget to add for overtime. That is wrong but often happens and affects not only your temporary benefits but also your permanent benefits. So verifying your pay rate is an important task. Moreover even if the initial figure is correct it can be adjusted later on for any loss of your health benefits paid or partially paid by your employer. So there is nothing simple about this area...it requires a careful assessment.

1 comment:

rkstaggers said...

Has the laws been changed to allow for an increase of TTD from year to year. I'm stil recieving the rate that I was injured in 2002, yet have received no increase in weekly benefits. The insuror and their attourney had drwawn this claim out for five years now.
It is my understanding that a case went to the supreme court that increased the weekly benifits for cost of living increses when the injured was on Total Perm Disability