According to Florida’s claims data, the average workers comp settlement for sprain or strain to the upper extremities like a torn rotator cuff ranges from $20,000 to $23,000. Though the average workers comp benefits for such injuries can go up to $33,000.
However, not all torn rotator cuff injuries are covered by workers compensation. To be eligible for benefits, you first have to prove that they are work-related.
Unfortunately, most rotator cuff injuries are cumulative in nature. Meaning, they develop over time due to wear and tear. As such, proving that they are work-related can be a challenge.
Besides, the extent and severity of torn rotator cuff injuries tend to vary widely. So there’s a good chance you’ll receive much more or much less than the average workers comp settlement for torn rotator cuff.
To determine how much you’re entitled to and ensure that you don’t get shortchanged, here’s a quick guide for you.
Understanding Torn Rotator Cuff Injury
Rotator cuff tears happen when the tendons connecting the muscles to the shoulder bones are ripped. In most cases of torn rotator cuff injuries, the tendon is totally stripped away from the bone.
Tendons, if you didn’t know, play an important role in our bodies. Aside from connecting our muscles to our bones, this group of tissues also allows us to move our limbs. They also prevent muscle injury by absorbing the impact of our movements.
So when the tendon is ripped away from the bone, as in the case of a torn rotator cuff, it can cause tremendous pain. It can also restrict you from raising your arm or lifting things you used to lift.
A torn rotator cuff is a pretty common injury, especially if your daily activities involve moving or using your arms a lot. Baseball or tennis players, painters, and window cleaners are especially prone to such injury.
As I’ve mentioned, a rotator cuff tear usually develops over time due to wear and tear. But it can also happen as a result of an accident or from lifting something heavy.
Depending on your injury, treatment for torn rotator cuff can range from pain relievers to a full-on surgery. If it’s a slight tear, you might just be advised to rest your shoulders for a few days. But severe cases may need shoulder replacement surgery.
The recovery period from a torn rotator cuff surgery can take anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks. Though, in some cases, it can take longer especially if it’s a complete tear. And even if you’re allowed to go back to work, you may still have some light-duty restrictions to allow your shoulder to fully heal.
If left untreated, a torn rotator cuff can lead to more serious complications. Your shoulder joints may deteriorate or worse, you could lose the ability to move your shoulder permanently.
How to Determine Workers Comp Settlement for Torn Rotator Cuff
If you can prove that your torn rotator cuff is work-related, you could be eligible for benefits. Your workers comp settlement will usually include medical benefits and lost wages compensation.
To determine how much your workers comp settlement should be, you need to understand how those benefits are calculated.
As per Florida law, your insurance provider should pay for all necessary medical treatments and expenses. This includes emergency services, medical treatments, medications, surgeries, and rehabilitative therapies (if necessary).
However, the law also states that your treating doctor must be accredited by the insurance company for you to be eligible for medical benefits.
All authorized medical bills should be submitted by your doctor to your insurance provider. This means you shouldn’t pay for any medical procedure as long as it’s authorized by your doctor.
Lost Wages Compensation
For the purpose of calculating lost wages compensation, a work-related injury is classified into four:
- temporary partial disability (TPD)
- permanent partial disability (PPD)
- temporary total disability (TTD)
- permanent total disability (PTD)
Each of the classifications above carries different lost wages compensation rates. Though in most cases, you’ll be paid 66 2/3% of your average weekly wage from before your injury.
In Florida, however, you’ll only be paid for the first seven days of your disability if your time off from work exceeds 21 days. Temporary disability benefits will also be paid for a maximum of 104 weeks or when you reached MMI, whichever comes first.
Should You Hire a Lawyer?
Legally, you’re not required to hire a workers comp lawyer. But we strongly recommend that you do so.
Having an experienced workers comp lawyer like Victor Malca working for you will significantly increase your chances of getting the benefits you deserve. He knows how the state’s workers compensation law works and how to use them to your advantage. He has already helped thousands of injured workers in Florida fight for their benefits. He can help you get yours too. Call us now for a free consultation.
VICTOR MALCA – Florida Workers Compensation & Social Security Disability Attorney
Victor Malca P.A. has over 27 years of litigation experience in Workers Compensation and Social Security Disability lawsuits. His experience and continued success when fighting for his clients puts him among the most trusted workers’ compensation attorney’s in Florida. He specializes in representing injured workers on compensation benefit cases and disabled individuals claiming lost social security disability benefits.
Book a free consultation today. Our unwavering advocacy for employee rights and privileges are recognized by our past clients across South Florida.
About The Author
Judy Ponio is a writer and editor for the Victor Malca Law P.A. website and blog. She enjoys helping people in need with questions about social security disability and workers compensation law. She has a passion for helping those in need and the elderly with accurate legal information that can make a positive difference in their lives.