How Are Average Weekly Wages Calculated For Workers’ Compensation Benefits?


Posted by: Chris

Employees that are temporarily disabled because of an injury they suffered at work often worry about how their injury will affect their income. Temporarily disabled employees may have to take time off of work to recover, which means they won’t be able to earn an income while they heal. Fortunately, these employees may be entitled to workers’ compensation, which will help make up for their lost income.

How Are Average Weekly Wages Calculated?

An employee that is temporarily disabled because of an on-the-job injury may be paid 70% of their average weekly wages. To understand how you will be compensated, it’s important to learn how your average weekly wages will be calculated. First, figure out your gross earnings for the last year, which is the income that you have earned before taxes and other deductions were taken out. If you have worked for your employer for over a year, divide your gross earnings for the last 12 months by 52 to determine your average weekly wages. If you have worked for your employer for less than a year, divide your gross earnings by the total number of weeks that you have worked for your employer.

Some employees are paid on a piece-rate basis, meaning they are paid based on their productivity. For instance, someone that works in a factory may be compensated for every finished product he is able to produce. To determine average weekly wages, follow these steps:

  1. Calculate your gross earnings for your current employer from the last 52 weeks.
  2. Divide these gross earnings by the number of hours that you worked for the employer over the last year. This will determine your hourly wage.
  3. Multiply the hourly wage from step #2 by the number of hours in a full-time workweek. This will determine your average weekly wage.

This is typically how the average weekly wages are calculated for injured workers.

Maximum Compensation Rates

After making the calculations above, multiply your average weekly wage by 0.70 to determine what you are entitled to under workers’ compensation laws.

Injured workers cannot receive more than 70% of the state’s average weekly wages, which are posted on this chart. This means if 70% of your average weekly wages is greater than 70% of the state’s average weekly wages, you will receive the lesser amount.

Do you have questions about your rights under Oklahoma’s workers’ compensation laws? If so, let our experienced attorneys help. Please call Armstrong & Vaught, P.L.C. today at 918-582-2500, toll free at (800) 722-8880, or contact us online for a free consultation with an experienced attorney.