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Understanding Degrees of Impairment in Indiana Work Comp

  • When you're injured at work, it takes time and money to recover and get back to the job, if you're able to return to work at all. Unfortunately, trying to find information about your work comp claim and what you'll need to know isn’t always straightforward.

    You might have seen terms such as degrees of impairment, which can be confusing if you’re not well-versed in legal matters. What does that mean for your claim? When you're injured, it's important to know which benefits are available and eligible for your injury. Continue reading to learn more about the confusing terms in work comp benefits in Indiana.


    Degrees of Impairment and Scheduled Injuries

    Degrees of impairment are a way to determine how serious your injuries are and how much compensation you should receive for each injury. If you're dealing with a scheduled injury, your injury is assigned a certain number of degrees. If you lost the use of your thumb completely, for example, you'd be assigned twelve degrees of impairment.

    Unscheduled injuries, in contrast, don't have a specific number of degrees. Injuries such as head trauma and spinal injuries affect other parts of the body, so a back injury resulting in paralysis won't be compensated the same way as losing an eye.


    What Degree Values Mean for Your Work Comp

    The effect on your claim will depend on the location and severity of your injury. Each number of degrees associated with each injury determines the amount of compensation you'll earn per week for your injury.

    For example, let's say you suffer an injury to the ear, resulting in hearing loss. Hearing loss in one ear is assigned 15 degrees of impairment. You'll receive payments proportionate to that damage. If you lost only half of your hearing, however, you'd only receive compensation for seven-and-one-half degrees.

    The level of your impairment will directly affect the amount of compensation you receive. Your doctor will determine the amount of damage done, and then your work comp lawyer can help you determine the exact worth of your claim.


    Seek Full Benefits for Your Injury

    When you're injured at work, it can be difficult to know the full worth of the benefits you should receive. You're struggling with your injury, and now you're hearing and reading technical jargon that you don't understand. What are scheduled and unscheduled injuries? Why do degrees of impairment matter?

    Understanding all parts of your claim, including degrees of impairment, is vital for your Indiana work comp claim. You need maximum compensation to fund your recovery, so understanding what makes a complete claim is vital. If you’re running into roadblocks, your Indiana workers comp lawyer from Kooi Law can help.

    If you're struggling to understand your workers comp benefits, or if you're afraid you're not getting the full amount you deserve, seek out our attorneys for a free claim review. We'll discuss your workers comp and all available options to ensure you’re securing maximum benefits for your on-the-job injury. For more information, give us a call at 317-569-1335 or visit us online.