Suffering an injury on the job can affect a worker’s ability to earn a paycheck for an extended period of time. Many workers are aware of the workers’ compensation system in Minnesota. Getting proper medical care, rehabilitation and compensation to cover a portion of lost wages during physical recovery are critical after a serious work injury. In some instances, however, an injury may be permanently disabling — making it impossible for an individual to return to work. In these situations, it may be possible to obtain Social Security Disability benefits, as well as workers’ compensation benefits.

Workers’ compensation is essentially a state governed program to provide benefits to injured workers to allow them to recover and get back to work. Benefits may provide for a portion of the worker’s lost wages, medical care, rehabilitation, vocational training and temporary or permanent disability. However, the program is not necessarily geared toward ongoing benefits after the worker has reached maximum medical improvement.

SSDI benefits, on the other hand, are part of a federal program that provides benefits for workers who can no longer work due to a disabling condition that is expected to last more than one year, or result in death. Not all injured workers qualify for benefits from both programs. Your lawyer needs to know how to coordinate the claims to maximize the overall benefits you may be entitled to receive.

Maximizing Benefits May Require Coordinated Claims

A workplace accident, injury or occupational illness may qualify for benefits in excess of what the workers’ compensation system can provide. SSDI benefits, a possible third-party personal injury claim if a workplace accident is negligently caused by someone from a different company, and workers’ compensation claims all require detailed analysis after an injury. After an injury, it is vital for workers to have the guidance and advocacy of a full-service and integrated disability and injury law firm.