Permanent total disability benefits are awarded through the workers compensation system to injured workers that are unable to perform any type of work as a result of their injuries. Anyone who meets this criteria can receive permanent total disability benefits for a period of 15 years or until they are old enough to obtain maximum Social Security retirement benefits, whichever is longer. But, these benefits will only continue if the injured worker passes the Workers’ Compensation Commission’s annual review.
What is the Annual Permanent Total Disability Review?
The Workers’ Compensation Commission conducts annual reviews to ensure that everyone who is receiving permanent total disability benefits is still disabled and unable to work as a result of their injuries. If someone no longer meets these requirements, he or she no longer qualifies to receive these benefits. Therefore, the purpose of this review is to determine whether or not the benefits should continue for another year.
For example, let’s say you are receiving these benefits, but were able to find employment within the last year. In this case, it is clear that your work-related injuries no longer hold you back from finding work, so you are no longer qualified for permanent total disability benefits.
What to Expect During the Annual Review
Anyone who is currently receiving permanent total disability benefits is required to submit an affidavit to the Workers’ Compensation Commission every year. The affidavit should state that the injured worker has not been employed within the last year and is still incapable of finding employment as a result of their disabilities.
It’s important to be honest when it comes to submitting the affidavit for your annual review. The affidavit is written under oath, which means you could face penalties for perjury if you are dishonest.
Consequences For Failing to Submit An Affidavit
It is the injured worker’s responsibility to submit an affidavit to the Commission every year, and there are consequences for failing to do so. If you forget to submit an affidavit, the Commission can take action to suspend your benefits immediately. If this happens, you may need to schedule and attend a hearing in front of the Commission in order to reinstate the benefits you deserve. It’s best to submit the affidavit in a timely manner to save yourself the trouble of having to prepare for and attend a hearing.
Are you permanently disabled as a result of a work-related injury? If so, contact Armstrong & Vaught, P.L.C. at once. Our skilled attorneys take pride in guiding injured workers through the process of obtaining workers’ compensation benefits. Call us now at 918-582-2500, toll free at (800) 722-8880, or contact us online for a free consultation with an experienced attorney.