Continuing from where we left off in Workers’ Compensation Benefits vs. Social Security Disability Benefits (Pt. 1), below we will resume our discussion regarding some of the important differences between Social Security disability benefits and workers’ compensation benefits for people who’ve sustained permanent impairments as a result of workplace accidents and injuries.
In addition to their different determination processes and eligibility requirements, Social Security disability benefits and workers’ compensation benefits also differ as follows:
As officials at the Social Security Administration (SSA) review a person’s case, they will closely examine and take into account all of a person’s medical issues – including issues like diabetes, permanent impairments, deafness, etc. The sum of these medical issues will then play a role in making the determination regarding whether a person can return to work (even if returning to work would necessitate additional job training and/or special equipment).
In contrast, determinations regarding workers’ compensation benefits will be far more restricted, as they will only consider the injuries or impairments that a person has as a result of the workplace accident. In cases when a person may have prior medical issues, then it must be the case that the work accident or injury further complicated these prior conditions and, consequently, has impacted a person’s ability to work. If this is not the case, then a person will likely run into problems obtaining these workers’ compensation benefits.
While people may qualify for (and may be able to receive) either disability benefits, workers compensation benefits or both types of benefits, it’s important that they are aware that receiving Social Security disability benefits may impact the amount of their workers’ compensation benefits (namely in that it may lower workers’ compensation benefit amounts).
However, the converse is not true – in other words, receiving workers’ compensation benefits will NOT impact the amount Social Security disability benefits (as the Social Security Administration does not count workers’ comp benefits as a source of income for people).
The bottom line is that, if or when a person is applying for either or both of these types of benefits, working with an experienced attorney will be critical to ensuring that their claims proceed as smoothly as possible and that they are able to obtain the maximum possible benefits for their injuries.
With more than 30 years of combined workers’ compensation experience, the Denver workers’ compensation attorneys at the Law Office of Steven J. Picardi have extensive knowledge of Colorado workers’ compensation law, strong credentials and a record of success that consistently allows them to effectively represent injured employees in all phases of workers’ compensation claims and litigation. Our firm’s lawyers remain abreast of the latest changes in workers’ compensation laws and are ready to use their skills and knowledge to your advantage.
For experienced legal advocacy in defending or filing a workers’ compensation claim, contact the Picardi Law Firm for a consultation by calling (303) 778-8881 or by emailing us using the form at the top of the screen.