Nobody ever expects to get injured on the job, but accidents happen, and when they do, it can leave you with temporary total disability (TTD) or temporary partial disability (TPD). What is TTD? TTD is a crucial component of workers’ compensation, and it can provide you with monetary benefits to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, and other related expenses if your doctor says you cannot work at all. You will receive TPD when you have medical restrictions your employer cannot accommodate.
In this blog, an experienced Fort Lauderdale workers’ compensation lawyer from Lyle B. Masnikoff & Associates discusses TTD/TPD and clarifies some common misconceptions.
If you’ve suffered a work injury and need help with your claim, call us at (866) 519-3831 to schedule your FREE consultation with a member of our dedicated team.
What is TTD/TPD?
TTD is a type of workers’ compensation benefit that provides wage replacement for an employee who is temporarily unable to work due to a workplace injury.
TTD benefits are typically paid when the employee’s injuries prevent them from performing their regular job duties and the employer cannot accommodate any work restrictions.
Note the key word here is “temporarily,” meaning there is an expectation that the injured employee will eventually recover and be able to resume work.
With TPD, you could be eligible to receive benefits for up to 104 weeks if you cannot make 80% of the wages you were making at the time of your accident. This workers’ compensation benefit applies if your doctor says you can return to work with restrictions, but your employer cannot accommodate them.
How Does TTD/TPD Work?
If you have sustained a workplace injury and your doctor has advised you that you cannot work, you should file a workers’ compensation claim immediately.
Once the claim has been approved, you will start receiving TTD/TPD payments. These payments will continue until you recover from your injuries and can return to work.
How Much Will You Receive in TTD/TPD Benefits?
Your average weekly wage determines the amount of your TTD/TPD benefits. Typically, you will receive 2/3 of your average weekly wage, up to the maximum set by law.
The maximum TTD/TPD benefits a worker can receive in Florida is $1,197 per week as of 2023. This amount is adjusted annually.
When Do TTD/TPD Benefits End in Florida?
TTD/TPD benefits in Florida are designed to assist workers when they’re temporarily unable to work due to a job-related injury. But like all good things, these benefits have a duration. Here’s when your TTD/TPD benefits will end:
Back to Work
If your doctor gives the green light, indicating you’re fit to resume work, your TTD/TPD benefits will cease.
Maximum Medical Improvement, or MMI, is a critical stage. If your doctor determines that your condition has stabilized to the extent it won’t improve further, even with continued medical care, you’ve hit MMI. Once you reach this stage, your TTD benefits wrap up.
End of the Benefits Period
Remember, there’s a time frame for everything. Your TTD benefits will also end when you’ve maxed out your temporary disability benefits period. You might be thinking, “How long is this benefits period?”
In line with the precedent set in Westphal v. City of St. Petersburg, 194 So.3d 311 (Fla. 2016), if you haven’t reached MMI by the end of the standard 104-week period, your benefits could potentially extend up to 260 weeks, which is five years. However, not everyone will qualify for this extension, so knowing your unique situation is pivotal.
Bottom line? Each case is unique. To ensure you’re not leaving any benefits on the table, consult with an experienced Fort Lauderdale workers’ compensation lawyer. They’ll guide you through the specifics, ensuring your rights are safeguarded.
The Role of Medical Evaluations
When pursuing TTD/TPD benefits, medical evaluations hold paramount importance. Insurance companies routinely request an independent medical examination, often conducted by a doctor in the same specialty as your authorized treating physician.
The focus of this examination? To determine if your treatment is medically necessary and ascertain whether you’ve attained your maximum medical improvement.
Understand that the findings of this examination carry weight. They directly impact the magnitude and duration of the benefits you receive.
But here’s where it becomes crucial: Navigating the complexities of these evaluations and their implications isn’t straightforward. With their vast resources and experienced legal teams, insurance companies can sometimes interpret these evaluations to their advantage.
This is where the skill of a dedicated legal representative becomes invaluable. With an experienced attorney, you ensure that these medical evaluations serve your interests and that any potential ambiguities or challenges are addressed promptly and effectively.
While medical evaluations set the stage, having trustworthy legal representation can orchestrate a favorable outcome, safeguarding your rightful benefits.
Managing Medical Bills and Expenses
Medical bills can quickly pile up after a workplace injury. Thankfully, with TTD/TPD, workers’ compensation insurance typically covers the medical expenses for necessary treatments related to your workplace injury.
In addition to mileage reimbursement for travel to and from your authorized doctor and the pharmacy, the following medical expenses are covered:
Every medical examination, from the initial assessment to follow-up visits, is encompassed under TTD/TPD. This ensures uninterrupted medical attention throughout your recovery journey.
Should your injury necessitate an extended hospital stay, TTD/TPD provides coverage. This includes accommodations, meals, and all requisite medical care during the duration of your stay.
TTD/TPD extends its coverage to all medications an authorized medical practitioner prescribes, ensuring that the cost of essential drugs doesn’t burden the injured party.
Diagnostic tests, such as X-rays, MRIs, and other relevant procedures, are essential in understanding the extent and nature of injuries. TTD/TPD ensures these are covered, enabling a comprehensive assessment of the injury.
In cases where physical therapy is necessary for recovery, TTD/TPD covers the associated costs. This ensures that individuals have access to the best rehabilitative care, paving the way for a smoother and faster recovery.
However, it’s common for insurance companies to challenge certain medical expenses, stressing the need for reliable legal representation.
An experienced workers’ compensation attorney in Fort Lauderdale will be familiar with the local nuances of the law and can assist in ensuring you’re not left shouldering these costs unfairly.
Dealing with Disputes in Your TTD/TPD Claim
Understanding Insurance Company Challenges
It’s no secret that insurance companies aim to minimize their payouts. They might question the severity of your injury, the necessity of specific treatments, or even the length of time you’re claiming TTD/TPD benefits. Fort Lauderdale residents should be prepared for such challenges.
Your Right to a Second Opinion
If you feel the insurance company’s independent medical examination wasn’t fair or accurate, you’re typically entitled to a second opinion.
This means getting an evaluation from another medical professional, preferably in the same specialty, to ensure you’re getting a fair assessment.
Legal Representation Matters
Disputes with insurance companies over TTD/TPD can be overwhelming. That’s where your Fort Lauderdale lawyer comes into play. With their experience with workers’ compensation claims, they can be your best ally in these disputes, ensuring your rights are upheld, and you get the fair compensation you are entitled to.
If you’ve been injured on the job and are unable to work, TTD/TPD benefits can provide you with the wage loss replacement you need while you recover.
However, navigating the workers’ compensation process can be challenging, and your employer and their insurance company may be looking to limit your benefits.
With a skilled Fort Lauderdale lawyer by your side, you can confidently handle TTD benefit challenges. Contact us for a free consultation today, and let us protect your rights!
Protect Your TTD/TPD Benefits With Our Help
When you’re injured on the job, the last thing you want to worry about is understanding the details of Florida’s TTD/TPD workers’ comp benefits. But ensuring you get the full medical care you’re entitled to is essential.
At Lyle B. Masnikoff & Associates, we’re here for you. We have in-depth experience with workers’ compensation claims and are committed to helping you get the medical benefits you’re entitled to without any added stress.
There’s no need to spend hours searching online for an experienced “work comp attorney near me.” Think of us as your go-to team, always ready to stand by your side and make things easier for you so you can focus on your recovery.
Copyright © 2023. Lyle B. Masnikoff & Associates, P.A. All rights reserved.
The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information in this post should be construed as legal advice from the individual author or the law firm, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting based on any information included in or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country, or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.