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Determining Partial or Total Disability: What You Need to Know

Dec. 20, 2019

When you are seriously injured on the job, you likely expect to go back to work eventually. However, some injuries are so severe that you cannot fully recover from them. These severe injuries are considered to be a disability. However, whether it is a partial or total disability is determined by several factors.

The Doctors

The first thing to understand about a partial or total disability is that it is based on the doctor’s findings. If you only saw the company’s doctor for your injury, and they stated that you do not have a permanent disability, you will have little recourse. It is important to get an independent consultation, diagnosis, and potentially treatment for your injuries to ensure that you have an appropriate diagnosis.

Partial Disability

A partial disability is a permanent injury that you will not be able to recover from, but doesn’t keep you from working. For example, if you injure your shoulder to the point that you will never be able to lift more than five pounds, you may not be able to return to your normal work duties, but you could get employment in a call center or office where no lifting is required. This is considered a partial disability.

A partial disability does not get the same compensation as a total disability. Often, company doctors will admit to a partial disability, but in actuality a total disability has occurred. This is another reason you need to see an independent doctor.

Total Disability

A total disability is an injury that you will not be able to recover from that prevents you from reentering the workforce in any position. It can be difficult to prove total disability because there are so many potential jobs available depending on the injury you sustained. However, a good attorney will be able to determine if a finding of total disability is likely or not.

If you have had a severe workplace injury that will prevent you from returning to your chosen career, it is important that you act quickly to get the compensation that you deserve. Contact us today for more information or to schedule your free consultation.