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Glossary of WCB Terms

Workers' Compensation
(On-the-Job Injury or Illness)


Disability Classifications

An injured worker's health care provider will determine the extent of the disability. Cash benefits are directly related to the following disability classifications:

Temporary Total Disability
The injured worker's wage-earning capacity is lost totally, but only on a temporary basis.
Temporary Partial Disability
The wage-earning capacity is lost only partially, and on a temporary basis.
Permanent Total Disability
The employee's wage-earning capacity is permanently and totally lost. There is no limit on the number of weeks payable. In certain instances, an employee may continue to engage in business or employment, if his/her wages, combined with the weekly benefit, do not exceed the maximums set by law.
Permanent Partial Disability
Part of the employee's wage-earning capacity has been permanently lost. There are two types of permanent partial disability benefits, depending on the body part affected and the nature of the permanent disability: schedule loss of use (SLU) and non-schedule. The severity of the disability is measured when the employee has reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). MMI is presumed to occur no more than two years after the date of injury.
Schedule Loss of Use
A SLU occurs when an employee has permanently lost use of an upper extremity (shoulder, arm, hand, wrist, finger), lower extremity (hip, leg, knee, ankle, foot, toe), or eyesight or hearing. Compensation is limited to a certain number of weeks based on the body part and severity of the disability, according to a schedule set by law. Temporary benefits that have been paid are deducted from the total SLU award.
Non-Schedule
Non-schedule is a permanent disability involving a part of the body or condition that is not covered by a SLU award (e.g. spine, pelvis, lungs, heart, brain, etc.). Non-schedule benefits are based on the employee's permanent loss of earning capacity. If the work related accident or date of disablement occurred before March 13, 2007, benefits are payable as long as the partial disability exists and results in wage loss.

If the work related accident or date of disablement occurred on or after March 13, 2007, benefits are payable for a maximum number of weeks as determined by the claimant's loss of wage-earning capacity. The maximum number of weeks is set forth in statute as follows:

525 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 95%
500 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 90% thru 95%
475 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 85% thru 90%
450 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 80% thru 85%
425 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 75% thru 80%
400 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 70% thru 75%
375 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 60% thru 70%
350 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 50% thru 60%
300 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 40% thru 50%
275 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 30% thru 40%
250 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of greater than 15% thru 30%
225 weeks for loss of wage earning capacity of 15% or less
Disfigurement
Serious and permanent disfigurement to the face, head or neck may entitle the worker to compensation up to a maximum of $20,000, depending upon the date of the accident.