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Northwest OH Legal Blog

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Is My Claim Eligible for Permanent Total Disability?

There is a lot to consider with this question. Let’s start with the basic question of whether someone is eligible for Permanent Total Disability in the first place. The definition of Permanent Total Disability is found in the administrative code and “means the inability perform sustained remunerative employment due to the allowed conditions on the claim.”

The inability to work due to “allowed conditions on the claim” is important. An allowed condition is a medical diagnosis which has been determined by the Bureau of Workers Compensation or the Industrial Commission to be related to the workplace injury. Before applying for Permanent Total Disability, our firm works with injured workers and their doctors to determine if all conditions related to the injury have been allowed to the claim. To result in Permanent Total Disability, the conditions should be serious enough to prevent the injured worker from working by themselves. Issues not related to the injury are not considered.

The next question that must be answered is whether or not the conditions are permanent. Under the Code, “Permanent” means the disability will continue for an “indefinite period of time without any present indication of recovery therefrom.” If the condition is still being treated, and there is still a chance for medical improvement from the injury, the condition is not yet permanent, and the injured worker may be eligible for Temporary Total Disability. Once the maximum medical improvement is reached, the injured worker may begin the process of applying for Permanent Total Disability.

When applying for Permanent Total Disability the injured worker’s attorney must work to get reports from medical providers. There are important deadlines to be kept and the attorney must work to get vocational evidence necessary. There is usually only one hearing for Permanent Total Disability. When approved, it is a lifetime benefit based on the injured workers earnings from the year prior to the injury. The injured worker may also be eligible for the Disabled Workers Relief Fund, which adjusts for cost of living if injured workers wages are below a certain threshold.

Two final points. First, the injured worker must have left the workforce because of the injury. If the injured worker quit and has not been back to work for reasons other than the injury, he or she may not eligible.

Second, it is important to distinguish Workers’ Compensation from Social Security Disability. Unlike disability from Workers’ Compensation, Social Security will consider all conditions keeping an individual from working, making disability compensation available for someone who is not working for a reason other than a workplace injury. It is possible to be on both Workers’ Compensation and Social Security Disability. However, Social Security will offset the amount paid to the injured worker. If a Social Security Disability claimant files for Permanent Total Disability, he or she should let their Social Security attorney know.

If you have questions regarding your Workers’ Compensation claim, or if you think you need to file for Permanent Total Disability, contact Allotta Farley at (419) 535-0075 to set up a free consultation.


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With an office located in Toledo , OH Allotta Farley Co., L.P.A. serves clients throughout northwest OH with various legal matters. Areas of service include Allen County, Ashland County, Auglaize County, Crawford County, Defiance County, Erie County, Fulton County, Hancock County, Hardin County, Henry County, Huron County, Lucas County, Marion County, Mercer County, Morrow County, Ottawa County, Paulding County, Putnam County, Richland County, Sandusky County, Seneca County, Van Wert County, Williams County, Wood County, Wyandot County.

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| Phone: 419.535.0075

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