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Ledgerwood Law Group

Estimating the Amount of Your CA Permanent Disability Payment

If you have suffered a permanent injury as a result of your job, the biggest question on your mind is probably “how much can I get for permanent disability in CA?” The answer entirely depends on how you are rated in the disability system. And if you don’t know how it works, you will likely be given far less than you deserve.

Permanent disability (PD) is payment for your reduced earning capacity due to a workplace injury. Under the California workers’ compensation system, the full amount a worker can receive for lost earning capacity is determined by a formula. The formula is modified from time to time, but currently includes five parts:

  • Injured body part – The first part of the equation is your injury itself. Many workers make the mistake of assuming their injury is a standalone affliction, such as an amputated leg or back injury. However, any injury that arises as a result of your base injury may also be claimed under your PD.
  • Impairment – The next step is to determine your percentage of your impairment. It is determined by medical charts, a physical examination, and the doctor’s application of AMA Guides to Evaluation of Permanent Impairment. Understandably, this rating depends heavily on which doctor is chosen to evaluate your condition and can greatly affect the amount of your disability payment.
  • Future earnings multiplier – This modifier can potentially increase the amount of your PD, but only if your injury occurred before January 1, 2013.
  • Occupation at time of injury – Under the California Labor Code, impairments are rated differently based on a worker’s occupation. A system of codes are used to determine how your injury affects your occupational performance. There is much to be gained by choosing an appropriate occupational group number. Depending on which activities you were performing at the time of your injury, you may qualify for an increased payment.
  • Age at time of injury – The final part of the equation is your age on the date of your injury. Workers who are 42 years or older receive an increase on their PD, while workers 36 or younger will see a reduction.

At the Ledgerwood Law Group, we know that the key to how much you could get for permanent disability in CA relies on maximizing each part of the equation. We can evaluate your injury case and determine the highest value for each rating, increasing the amount of your permanent disability payments. Contact us today at 888-761-7383 to get started or click the link on this page for a FREE copy of our report, The Northern California Workers’ Compensation Survival Manual.