Calculating Your Average Weekly Wage
Of course, one of the most important issues you will face in a workers’ compensation claim if you are out of work due to an injury is the potential loss of your income. If you are out of work due to an injury on the job, under workers’ compensation, you will typically receive Temporary Total Disability (TTD), two-thirds of your “average weekly wage.” Your average weekly wage is determined based on your actual earnings and not your earning capacity. The amount of your gross earnings are used for the calculation, not your net earnings.
There are several ways to calculate your average weekly wage:
First, if you have worked every week for an employer for at least 52 weeks prior to your injury, your total earnings are divided by 52 weeks.
Second, if you have missed seven or more consecutive calendar days during the 52-week period before your injury, then one week may be deducted from the 52-week period for each seven-day period.
Third, if you have worked less than 52 weeks before the injury, your average weekly wage is typically calculated by dividing the earnings during that period by the number of weeks that you have worked.
Fourth, if it is not practical to calculate your average weekly wage because you have worked a short time before the accident, you can make a claim for an average weekly wage of a person of the same pay grade and similar position or job duties as you during the 52 weeks prior to the date of injury.
Finally, where it is not possible to calculate your average weekly wage under the above methods, you may request an approximate amount which you would have earned if not for the injury.
When Will You Receive Your Wage Payment?
Wage compensation is typically due after you have missed seven (7) days of work. Wage payments are made typically made weekly and are to be paid to you until you are able to return to work or you agree to a lump sum settlement with the workers’ compensation insurance carrier which is approved by the North Carolina Industrial Commission.
Returning to Work After a Permanent Injury
If you can return to work, but make less money due to the injury, you can receive Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) benefits under North Carolina workers’ compensation law to make up for the shortfall.
If you would like a free consultation regarding your workers’ compensation claim, call us at 919.277.0161 or contact us online. We are happy to discuss your claim and answer any questions you may have.