Learn the different types of benefits available, the duration of benefits, and other important factors that can affect your claim.
If you have been injured at work or become sick due to a work-related illness in Ohio, you should be eligible to receive workers' compensation benefits to help pay for medical bills, replacement income, and other expenses related to your work-related injury or illness.
But how long can you receive workers' compensation benefits in Ohio? Is there a limit or cutoff date for receiving workers' comp? And what happens after that deadline? Can you reapply for worker's compensation benefits?
Here's what you should know.
When can I start receiving workers' compensation benefits in Ohio?
Workers' compensation is a state-mandated insurance program for workers who become sick or injured on the job. Managed by the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation, this program provides money for medical bills and lost wages if an employee cannot work due to a work-related injury or illness.
If you've sustained a work injury or occupational illness that causes you to miss work, lost-time wage benefits will start after eight consecutive days of absence. It's important to note that the first seven days of missed work are not initially compensable. However, if your work absence continues for at least 14 consecutive days, workers' compensation will reimburse you for the entire period of disability, including the first seven days.
How long can I receive workers' compensation benefits in Ohio?
Initially, workers receive 72 percent of their full weekly pay (up to a limit) for the first 12 weeks they cannot work. After 12 weeks, sick or injured workers in Ohio can receive 66 2/3 percent of their full weekly pay. You can continue to receive workers' compensation benefits after 12 weeks indefinitely, however, certain restrictions apply, which you can read more about below.
What happens after my workers' compensation benefits expire?
Technically, workers' compensation benefits don't expire in Ohio. However, the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation will stop making temporary total payments for the following reasons:
- You have returned to work.
- The doctor treating your work-related injury or illness has decided you are healthy enough to return to work.
- Your employer has agreed to allow you to return to work within certain restrictions provided by the doctor treating your work-related injury or illness.
- Your medical condition has stabilized, and the doctor treating you has determined that your medical condition will not change or improve in the future. This is known as maximum medical improvement (MMI).
- You are working for another company while you are sick or injured.
- You are incarcerated.
- You have voluntarily decided not to return to work.
Can I continue to receive workers' comp if I have a temporary total disability (TTD)?
The short answer? Yes. But as explained above, you must meet the above criteria to continue receiving your Ohio workers' compensation benefit check. If you meet those rules and restrictions, you can continue to receive workers' comp indefinitely in Ohio if you have a temporary total disability.
But that's often not the case in most cases. Many workers stop receiving workers' compensation at a certain point, usually because the doctor says they can return to work or their medical condition will not likely improve. As the name suggests, temporary total disability injuries or illnesses are not expected to last forever. At a certain point, sick or injured workers are expected to recover and be able to return to work.
Can I continue to receive workers' comp if I have a permanent total disability (PTD)?
Here again, the short answer is yes, you can and should continue to receive workers' compensation benefits in Ohio if you have a permanent total disability, which means your work-related injury or illness will prevent you from returning to work.
However, in many cases in Ohio, permanent total disability payments become Social Security Disability (SSD) payments. This is because sick or injured workers eligible for SSD payments can receive such payments for life. But qualifying for SSD benefits in Ohio can often be a complicated legal process.
How can an Ohio workers' compensation attorney help me?
Receiving the financial compensation you deserve if you become seriously injured or sick at work can be extremely challenging. Your workers' compensation claim might be challenged, denied, or terminated for various reasons. This is why it's critical that you have an experienced Ohio workers' compensation lawyer on your side.
Our dedicated legal team at Hochman & Plunkett Co., L.P.A. can help you every step of the way. We understand how Ohio's workers' compensation system works because we have helped many sick or injured workers get the money they deserve. Contact us and schedule a free case consultation with an Ohio workers' compensation attorney you can trust. We have offices in Dayton, Cincinnati, Springfield, and Troy and handle injury claims throughout Ohio.