It’s that time of year again when the Colorado Department of Workers’ Compensation issues new benefit guidelines for the upcoming fiscal year. In Colorado state government, each fiscal year runs from July 1st through June 30th each year.
And each year, maximum benefit payments for workers’ compensation change. Last year, we reported on these guidelines…this year is no different, just different amounts.
To be clear, maximum benefits means the highest dollar amount you can legally be paid in workers’ compensation wage loss benefits in the event of an on-the-job injury. These benefits include:
• Temporary total disability
• Temporary partial disability
• Permanent total disability
• Death benefits
As you know, this is separate from medical benefits, which pay all necessary medical expenses connected with an on-the-job injury.
Currently, the maximum average weekly stands at $810.67 – meaning, the beneficiary (i.e. injured worker or spouse) could receive no more than that amount each week for the benefits listed above.
After July 1st, this maximum rate will jump to $828.03…to qualify for this maximum rate, an injured worker will need to be earning at least $1242.04 per week. Workers’ compensation laws in Colorado stipulate that the maximum benefit shall be 91% of the average weekly wage for workers in the state.
Also, Colorado law requires insurers to pay wage loss benefits at least every two weeks.
Other changes in benefit amounts for the 2011-2012 fiscal year include:
• Scheduled Impairment Rate – increasing to $260.59 per week
• Bodily Disfigurement – Standard max increasing to $4396 for standard disfigurement and $8792 for extensive scars and loss of limb
In addition to these weekly limits taking effect at the beginning of July, other limitations capping the total amount an injured worker can receive will change as well. Total limits for wage loss compensation benefits, or what’s called ‘statutory caps,’ for injuries occurring on or after January 1, 2012 will be the following:
• For injuries with a doctors’ impairment rating of 25% or less – $76,605.00
• For injuries with a doctors’ impairment rating of over 25% – $153,210.00
To learn more about these benefits, visit our Colorado workers’ compensation knowledge center today…our new e-book should be out soon, giving injured workers like you an all-in-one place to learn what you need to know to secure the benefits you need.
And if you’ve been injured on the job and are experiencing difficulty in obtaining your benefits, Denver attorneys for injured workers at the Babcock Law Firm can give you a distinct advantage in obtaining the maximum amount of benefits legitimately afforded to you under the law.