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  1. #1
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    Default How is Compensation Rate Calculated in Georgia

    How do you calculate the weekly compensation rate on a Georgia case?

    Here in NC you calculate the average weekly gross wages for the 52 weeks preceding the accident, and then 2/3 of that is the compensation rate. How does this calculation differ in Georgia? Thanks.
    The North Carolina Court of Appeals has held that "In contested Workers' Compensation cases today, access to competent legal counsel is a virtual necessity." Church v. Baxter Travenol Labs, Inc., and American Motorists Insurance Company, 104 N.C. App. 411, 416 (1991).

    Bob Bollinger, Attorney and Board Certified Specialist in NC Workers' Compensation Law

  2. #2
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    Default Re: How is Compensation Rate Calculated in Georgia

    complwyr
    Here in NC you calculate the average weekly gross wages for the 52 weeks preceding the accident, and then 2/3 of that is the compensation rate.
    In Georgia they calculate the AWW by the 13 weeks prior to the date of injury, 2/3 of that figure is the weekly compensation rate.

    How are Workers' Compensation cash benefits calculated?
    Your Workers' Compensation benefits are first based on a term called your "average weekly wage." That wage figure is then applied to the type of disability benefits you are entitled to. You're average weekly wage is computed by averaging your wages from the 13 weeks prior to the injury. This figure includes salary, hourly pay, tips, meal allowances, lodging allowances, clothing allowances, and even year-end bonuses.
    Depending on how much you worked/made in the 13 weeks before the injury, this calculation could end up benefiting you or unfairly setting your wage lower than you think it should be. If you did not work for the 13 weeks preceding the injury (maybe you were hurt on your first day) your wage is usually set by the wage of a similar employee for the 13 weeks prior to your injury.
    https://www.hg.org/article.asp?id=5092

    HOW MUCH WILL MY WEEKLY BENEFITS BE?
    You will receive two-thirds of your average weekly wage, but not more than $575.00 per week for an accident which occurred on or after July 1, 2016.
    https://sbwc.georgia.gov/law

    Tony
    Moderator Responses are based on my personal bias, experience and research - They do not represent the views of the admin nor may be accepted in the legal community, always consult an attorney.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: How is Compensation Rate Calculated in Georgia

    Hi Bob,

    Tony is absolutely correct, but since I know you are a lawyer, I'm going to expound on his response a little.

    If EE works "substantially the whole" of the preceding 13 weeks (which generally means 12 of the last 13 weeks), then you take the average of the gross pay to get your AWW. The comp rate is 2/3 of AWW up to a max (currently $575, but depending on injury date).

    If EE does not work "substantially the whole" of the preceding 13 weeks, then you use wages of a "similarly situated employee" and adopt those wages to determine the EE's AWW. There are often times disagreements about whether an employee is similar or not. Also, ER-INS will always use wages of the lowest paid similar employee they can find or they may use wages of a person who really does not have similar duties. So, you have to do some discovery here to make sure you get a fair shake.

    If neither of the above methods can be "fairly applied" to the situation, then you go by the contract of hire. For example, person was hired to work 40 hours at $9.00 per hour, so you get a $360 AWW even though that EE did not work the preceding 13 weeks and there are no similar EEs.

    Also, you can include the value of other employer provided benefits as part of the AWW (bonuses, lodging, meals, ER-paid insurance, etc.).

    Lastly, GA recognizes concurrent similar employment. So, if the EE was working more than one job at the time they were injured, and if those jobs are similar in nature (imagine an EE who works 3 days a week as a liquor store clerk and 3 days at a convenience store down the road), then you can combine those earnings to arrive at the AWW.

    Hope that helps.

    Chuck
    Charles Hamilton

    This post is NOT LEGAL ADVICE, but is for education and information only. Legal advice comes after a complete review of the facts and relevant documents. There is no implied or actual attorney-client relationship arising from this education exchange. You should speak with an attorney licensed in your state, to whom you have provided all the facts before you take steps that may impact your legal rights.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: How is Compensation Rate Calculated in Georgia

    Thanks, Tony and Chuck. Someone contacted me about a concurrent jurisdiction case, and the person's comp rate would be $944 in NC. It is only $550 in GA, due to an injury in early 2016 to a highly compensated employee.
    The North Carolina Court of Appeals has held that "In contested Workers' Compensation cases today, access to competent legal counsel is a virtual necessity." Church v. Baxter Travenol Labs, Inc., and American Motorists Insurance Company, 104 N.C. App. 411, 416 (1991).

    Bob Bollinger, Attorney and Board Certified Specialist in NC Workers' Compensation Law

  5. #5
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    Default Re: How is Compensation Rate Calculated in Georgia

    Do you know what the compensation rate is in Washington?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: How is Compensation Rate Calculated in Georgia

    Quote Quoting Corman View Post
    Do you know what the compensation rate is in Washington?
    Here ya go.

    Wages and Temporary Total Disability
    Self Insurance Claim Adjudication Guidelines
    http://www.lni.wa.gov/ClaimsIns/File...TempTotDis.pdf

    Tony
    Moderator Responses are based on my personal bias, experience and research - They do not represent the views of the admin nor may be accepted in the legal community, always consult an attorney.

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