How Long Can I Collect Workers’ Compensation Benefits in North Carolina?

April 28 , 2024

At the Ramsay Law Firm, P.A., our Charlotte workers’ compensation attorneys know the duration of workers’ compensation benefits in North Carolina depends on several factors, including the nature and severity of the injury, the extent of disability, the employee’s ability to return to work and the limitations of the law.

Here, we provide a general overview of the timing.

Workers’ Compensation Benefits in North Carolina

How Long Do North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Benefits Last?

North Carolina workers’ compensation benefits may be awarded, modified, or terminated based on changes in the employee’s medical condition, work status, or other relevant factors.

They include:

  • Temporary Total Disability (TTD)

Employees who are completely out of work due to work-related injuries may be eligible for temporary total disability benefits. TTD benefits typically continue until the employee returns to work or are released by their doctor without restrictions.  In North Carolina, the maximum duration for TTD benefits is 500 weeks.

  • Temporary Partial Disability (TPD)

Employees who can return to work but earn less than their pre-injury wages due to work restrictions or limitations may be eligible for temporary partial disability benefits.  TPD benefits are available for up to 500 weeks from the date of injury minus any weeks of TTD payments.

  • Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)

Employees who sustain a permanent impairment or disability due to their work injury can be compensated either by payment on the impairment rating or payment for continued reduced wages.

Employees who return to work at their prior earnings usually opt to collect payments based on their impairment rating. It is the impairment rating which determines the duration of benefits.  The duration of PPD benefits varies depending on the specific impairment rating, which is assessed by a physician, the body part and the start date of benefits. Disputes about ratings are resolved by the North Carolina Industrial Commission.

For an explanation of how to calculate the value of an impairment rating or what your rating is worth in North Carolina, watch “What is my Workers’ Compensation Rating Worth?”

Employees who have reduced wages due to their injury can elect to receive compensation for reduced wages for the remainder of the 500 weeks or until they return to making as much as before their injury.  The duration of these benefits vary, but cannot exceed 500 weeks.

  • Permanent Total Disability (PTD)

If an employee is permanently disabled due to a work-related injury, they may be eligible for permanent and total disability benefits.   PTD benefits are typically paid for the remainder of the 500 weeks.  However, in some cases, PTD may be extended if there is medical evidence of a complete loss of wage-earning ability.

For specific information about your eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits and the duration of benefits available to you, the Ramsay Law Firm can help.

Have You Been Injured at Work in North Carolina?

Our dedicated Mecklenburg County workers’ compensation law firm provides free consultations to all employees who have suffered a workplace injury in North Carolina by calling 704-376-1616 or contacting us online.

A Voice For The Injured.  Here Every Step of The Way.

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