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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Default Permanent Partial or Lump Sum

    My workers compensation claim was made in the State of: Ohio
    I fell at work and broke my wrist at work in 2005. Workmans Comp took car of all my medical expenses. I hired a lawyer to handle any furhter claims with this case. I was told I would have to wait a year at least before he could file a claim. He wanted to make sure I didn't need any more medical treatments. Well after 2 surgeries, the doctor said I would not have full use of my wrist. I had pins and screws put in and carpel tunnel surgery done on it. I have limited range of motion and can not lift anything heavy with that hand. Went through physical therapy and it did help some but my range of motion did not improve.
    I want to contact my lawyer about wanting to close my claim. What I want to know is if I should claim permanent partial disability or should I settle for a lump sum? How long do they pay the permanent partial disabilty for?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Re: Permanent Partial or Lump Sum


    Are you likely to require future treatment on your wrist, like another surgery, injections, etc.? If the answer is in the affirmative, then settlement is probably not an option for you. Settling your claim will close it, and you would be hard-pressed to convince a private health insurance carrier that ongoing treatment was not due to your industrial injury.

    You should apply for a permanent partial disability award (form C-92). This award is a lump sum that is paid to you in order to compensate you for a disability that will not prevent you from working, but is considered to be permanent.

    Here's how it works: you file the application and the Bureau of Workers' Compensation willl send you to a doctor for an examination. The doctor will take into account the allowed conditions in your claim and his/her exam findings. Then, s/he will assume that on the day you were injured, you possessed 100% of your whole-person ability. What are you now? 90%? 75%? The doctor will arrive at an impairment figure -- in your case, I would say something between 5-15%.

    The Bureau's impairment figure will probably be on the low side. Your attorney may send you for an exam with one of his/her doctors, who will probably find a much higher figure. The employer can do likewise in order to drive the impairment rating down.

    The matter may (or may not) then go to the Industrial Commission for a hearing. The hearing officer will probably average the findings of the doctors (let's just pretend that they are 8% for the Bureau + 22% for your doctor +2% for the employer's doctor = 33%, divided by 3 = 11%).

    I have discussed the calculation of C-92 awards elsewhere in the Ohio forums, so I won't bore you with the confusing language of the statute (Revised Code section 4123.57). The calculation is actually pretty simple. Take the final percentage of whole person impairment and double it (22). You will receive that many weeks of compensation at $226.00 per week (the statewide max rate for permanent partial awards for injuries occurring in 2005). So you're looking at $4,972.00, less attorneys' fees and expenses. Don't be confused by the inclusion of "weeks" -- that just pertains to the calculation of the amount to be paid. The award itself is paid in one check.

    The permanent partial award is not a final settlement of your claim. The claim has a 10 year statute of limitations that begins to run anew every time a medical bill or payment of compensation is made. Moreover, if your wrist gets worse or additional conditions are recognized in your claim, you can apply for an increase in the award (this is known as filing a C-92A).

    Finally, if your wrist has become (or in the future becomes) essentially useless, or you have lost the use of your hand as a result of your injury, you could file for a loss of use award. That would be a significantly larger check. Per the statute and the 2005 rate, you would be looking at $118,650.00.

    Best of luck,

    -- DB
    Last edited by DoubleBuckeye; 09-22-2009 at 03:21 PM.

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