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Permanent Partial Disability vs. Permanent Total Disability

Matt Murphy Apr 27, 2018

Man in wheelchairWorker’s compensation laws are designed to help hurt workers recover from injuries suffered while on the job. Benefits are paid according to the type and severity of the injury sustained. 

Permanent partial disability vs. permanent total disability payments depend on whether the worker is able to go back to work or suffered a career ending injury. At Murphy Law Firm in Missoula, MT, we pursue appropriate benefits for each worker. 

What Are Permanent Partial Disability Benefits?

Benefits under worker’s compensation law include lost wages and medical expenses associated with workplace injury. The ultimate goal of a worker’s compensation claim is to provide enough medical care and treatment to help injured workers recover and get back to work. 

However, some workers suffer permanent injury, making it necessary to pay benefits on a different basis. Permanent partial disability benefits are available for workers that have reached the maximum amount of medical improvement for their case. When physicians conclude the recovery reached is the highest level of medical recovery possible, the victim is entitled to seek permanent partial disability payments. 

In order to seek these benefits the worker must present an impairment rating, showing the level of recovery reached so a partial payment can be calculated.

What Are Permanent Total Disability Benefits?

When the medical condition of a worker is such that there is no reasonable belief the worker can return to the job, payment of permanent total disability benefits is necessary. Some common injuries that result in permanent total disability are:

  • Loss of vision
  • Loss of limbs
  • Paralysis
  • Contraction of a debilitating disease
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome

Application of the concepts of permanent total disability also requires looking at the individual, and his or her skill set prior to the accident. When an injury is suffered that makes it impossible to return to the job, a permanent total disability occurs. But if there are other job duties that can be performed, the claim may be reduced or denied. 

Evidence must be presented that proves what type of benefits the injured worker is entitled to receive. This requires careful analysis of the medical data, along with the requirements of the job. Many cases rely upon expert testimony from doctors and treating physicians to establish the level of injury and likelihood of recovery. Those conclusions must then be given a legal backdrop in support of the type of benefit being sought. Knowledgeable worker’s compensation attorneys with experience in this area of law can help.

Help For Permanent Partial Disability vs. Permanent Total Disability

If you have been hurt on the job, call us to find out what steps to take next. The attorneys at Murphy Law Firm are experienced in worker’s compensation law. They offer sound advice and actively pursue all the benefits injured workers deserve. Contact us online or call us today at (406) 452-2345.

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