You’ve been relying on your workers’ compensation benefits to pay for your medical expenses and lost income after a construction injury. But now that your doctor says that your condition has reached maximum medical improvement (MMI), you’re not sure what this means for your benefits or your future. What is MMI, and what should you do once you reach it?
You Won’t Know How Much You Are Owed Until Your Construction Injury Heals
Maximum medical improvement is a critical stage in both your healing and your construction injury claim. MMI means your doctor believes that further treatment won’t improve your injury. It also means your temporary income payments from workers’ compensation can no longer be paid.
Once you have reached MMI, your doctor will give you a rating based on the percentage of permanent disability your injury has caused. Depending on your disability rating, you may be able to:
- Go back to work with restrictions. Some employers can accommodate minor restrictions, such as limits on the amount of weight an employee may carry unassisted.
- Go back to work without restrictions. If your doctor decides that your condition is fully healed and hasn’t caused any permanent disability, your benefits will end and you could be forced to go back to work sooner than you anticipated.
- Change jobs or careers. Your rating may have restrictions that prevent you from performing construction work ever again. If your employer cannot accommodate the restrictions (such as reassigning you to light duty or a desk job), then you may have to undergo job retraining to earn a living in a less physically demanding career.
- Claim permanent disability benefits. Your impairment could qualify you for continued partial or total disability benefits through workers’ compensation. However, insurance companies will often try to deny long-term disability claims or settle them for far less than they are worth.
Let Us Help You After a Construction Accident
If your doctor believes you have reached MMI, but you are still unable to work, our New York construction injury attorneys can help you dispute the decision and work to ensure you get all of the benefits you are owed. Contact Hofmann & Schweitzer today or learn more about your rights in our FREE brochure, Hurt in a Construction Accident? You’re Not Alone.