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PPI Rating is the Basis for Permanent Disability Claims

Steve Wagner

Workplace accidents are a common occurrence everywhere, and the state of Indiana is no exception. Among different workplaces, Hoosiers working in roads, bridges, and highways are the most at risk when compared to any other workplace. In 2011, transportation-related incidents led to the death of 40 Hoosier workers, with many more suffering from permanent lifelong injuries.

In many such injuries, the victims suffer loss of limbs, fingers, or other injuries of a permanent nature. The Indiana Worker’s Compensation Act offers benefits to such workers for their loss of earning capacity owing to their permanent disability.

After the onset of work comp injury, the employee is entitled to temporary total disability (TTD) benefits, at the rate of 2/3 of average weekly wages. After the treatment is over, the doctor assigns a Permanent Partial Impairment (PPI) rating, which becomes the basis for final settlement.

Indiana law allows a totally disabled employee to receive a fixed sum of money over a period of time. The quantum of this compensation depends on the permanent partial impairment rating (PPI rating) given by the doctor. However, it is not necessary for the injured worker to accept the PPI rating the doctor happens to give.

Many workers challenge the PPI rating assigned to them by taking a second opinion from another doctor. However, not all of them succeed. A low PPI rating may be the result of the injury not requiring any surgery, the injury being an aggravation of a pre-existing condition, and more. Conversely, if the pain from the injury affects other parts of the body, or the impact of the injury is deeper than what is apparent, there exists strong grounds to challenge the PPI rating. In any case, if the second doctor awards a higher PPI rating, it provides a compelling base to negotiate for higher compensation.

Either way, it helps to have the backing of a competent and experienced Indiana workers’ compensation benefits lawyer, who can state your case well and negotiate for maximum benefits. Contact us at (888) 204-8440 to talk to our work comp lawyers and receive a free case evaluation. We do not charge any money upfront.


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