Professional truck drivers who are injured and cannot continue driving a truck face a potentially devastating loss of income, along with the medical bills and financial burdens that come along with serious personal injuries. Workers’ compensation laws compensate injured truckers for these financial hardships.
Generally, there are four kinds of workers’ compensation benefits available to injured truckers.
Medical Care. Your employer should pay for all of the medical care necessary to treat your injury. In some states (such as Illinois), you have the right to choose your own doctor. In other states (such as Missouri), your employer has the right to choose your doctor.
Temporary disability payments. Your employer should pay you some percentage of your average weekly wage (often 66%), up to a maximum cap, during the time that you are disabled from employment. These benefits are often referred to as temporary total disability (TTD) benefits. Employers often do not pay these benefits.
Permanent partial disability payment. If you have a permanent injury because of your work related accident, you are entitled to receive a lump sum disability payment. The amount of the permanent disability payment depends on your impairment rating and your average weekly wage. Employers often understate the lump sum payment by claiming an unreasonably low impairment rating, or refuse to make any partial disability payment.
Permanent total disability payments. If you have a permanent injury because of your work related accident that leaves you totally disabled and unable to work, you are entitled to receive monthly permanent disability payments for the rest of your life. The amount of the permanent disability payment depends on your average weekly wage.
Our frequently asked questions (FAQ) pages provided additional information regarding workers’ compensation medical care and calculation of temporary and permenent disability payments.
Employers almost always understate the benefits owed to injured truckers, or refuse to pay any benefits whatsoever. In that case, you need to hire an experienced trucker workers’ compensation attorney to force the company to pay.