In Georgia, an injured worker may continue to receive workers’ compensation benefits when in jail after an arrest while awaiting trial. However, they will not be able to continue receiving them when incarcerated after a conviction. Temporary total disability (TTD), temporary partial disability (TPD) and permanent partial disability (PPD) are no longer options once the injured worker is incarcerated.
What are TTD, TPD and PPD benefits?
- Temporary total disability benefits: These benefits, as determined by GA Code § 34-9-261, begin when you miss more than seven days of work due to your work injury and stop when you recover from your injury or are released to return to normal duty work, often at maximum medical improvement (MMI). MMI is when the doctor determines that your injury or medical condition will not further improve.
- Temporary partial disability benefits: These benefits, as determined by GA Code § 34-9-262, are paid when you can work but not at the wage you earned before your workplace injury, for example if your employer places you on light duty or you have to work fewer hours. They generally stop when the doctor determines your condition has improved as much as it can (you’ve reached MMI) and that you can return to normal duty work.
- Permanent partial disability benefits: These benefits are paid once the doctor determines you’ve reached MMI and has assessed your condition to determine your eligibility for disability benefits. Permanent partial disability benefits are compensation for the damage done to a particular body part as determined by GA Code § 34-9-263.
Are prisoners excluded from workers comp?
Among other groups, prisoners are not entitled to workers’ compensation when they are injured on the job, even if they were required to do the job as part of their incarceration, and even if they were paid to do the work. Prisoners who are living in halfway houses also fall under this exception.
What should I do if I go to jail while I’m on workers’ comp?
The most important thing is to keep your workers’ comp lawyer informed of where you are and when you get out. Though your payments and treatments may be suspended while you are in jail, your attorney may be able to help you avoid problems for missed appointments and hearings.
Will my workers’ comp benefits be reinstated after I get out of jail?
Once the injured worker is released, they may be able to get their workers’ compensation benefits reinstated, but the insurance adjuster is not going to reinstate those benefits automatically.
Talk with a competent workers’ comp attorney in Atlanta for a consultation regarding your legal options.