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What happens if I am able to return to work but I am not making as much money as before my injury?
Under the Indiana Workers Compensation Act your employer is required to either find a job for you to do within your work restrictions OR pay you Temporary Total Disability (TTD). However, sometimes injured workers are sent back to work, but cannot make as much money as they were making due to their work restrictions. This may mean working less hours or working a job that does not pay the same.
In a situation where you return to work but with restrictions that either reduce your hours or pay, then you are entitled to Temporary Partial Disability (TPD). That means you are entitled to a weekly compensation equal to sixty-six and two-thirds percent (66 2/3%) of the difference between your average weekly wages before the injury and the weekly wages at which you are employed after the injury. This can last for as long as three hundred (300) weeks. Your average weekly wage is figured by taking your gross earnings for 52 weeks prior to your injury and then dividing it by 52.
As an example, let’s say you are making $300 in gross wages per week for the past year before your injury. After you return to work, you are making $200 a week because you can no longer work overtime. You are entitled to 66 2/3% of the $100 difference between what you were earning before the injury and what you are now earning. You would get your earned gross wages of $200 plus your workers compensation Temporary Partial Disability benefit of $66.67. Often you will get your regular wages from your employer and then a follow-up check from the workers compensation insurer with the wage replacement benefit.
If you feel like you are not getting everything you are entitled to please give us a call so we can answer your questions and make sure you are getting everything you deserve. We have attorneys and offices in Indianapolis, Evansville/New Harmony, Jeffersonville and Lafayette. We cover the entirety of the states of Indiana and Kentucky.