Colorado Worker's Compensation Benefits
By Aaron Larson
Notice: The following overview of Colorado's worker's compensation (workmans comp) benefits is presented on an as-is basis. This information is believed accurate as of the date of authorship, but is not intended to provide a complete analysis of available benefits and may not reflect subsequent changes in the law. For a full review of Colorado's worker's compensation law, or for a determination of how the law applies to a specific worker, please consult a worker's compensation attorney licensed to practice in the state of Colorado.
- Special Employment Situations
- Medical Benefits & Choice of Physician
- Disability Benefits Provided
- Death Benefits Provided
- Limits on Attorney Fees
Colorado's system of worker's compensation (workman's comp) is compulsory, meaning that employers are required to provide worker's compensation insurance for their employees. Worker's compensation insurance may be provided through a competitive state fund, a private insurance carrier, or employers may self-insure. Waivers may be permitted.
The state worker's compensation act applies to agricultural workers. Any domestic worker who is employed by a single employer for forty or more hours per week, or five or more days per week, is covered by the state worker's compensation act.
Full medical benefits are provided to employees entitled to worker's compensation benefits, with no time or monetary limits. The employer selects the initial physician who will provide care, with the choice being subject to change by the state agency.
Payments are made for temporary total disability (TTD) in an amount determined by a percentage of the worker's wage, subject to a weekly maximum payment amount. Payments continue for the duration of the disability. Benefits are subject to offsets for benefits received through Social Security or under an employer pension or disability plan.
Payments are made for permanent total disability (PTD) based upon a percentage of the worker's wage, subject to a weekly maximum payment amount. Payments for PTD continue for life. Benefit are subject to offset for Social Security benefits, or benefits received under an employer pension or disability plan.
Payments for permanent partial disability (PPD) are available for the duration of the disability, subject to a Social Security benefit offset and to reduction by benefits under an employer pension or disability plan.
Scheduled awards are paid in addition to total temporary disability benefits starting upon termination of the termination of the TTD benefits. Scheduled awards are not reduced because of receipt of TTD benefits.
Benefits may be available for serious disfigurement of the face, head, or exposed body parts.
Physical and vocational rehabilitation benefits are available.
Within certain constraints and filing deadlines, occupational hearing losses may be compensable.
Death benefits are payable to an employee's surviving spouse, or spouse and children, based upon a percentage of the employee's wages, subject to a cap. A minimum benefit is provided regardless of the employee's earnings. A burial allowance is available.
Attorney fees for claimants are limited to 20% by statute.
Copyright © 2003-2011 Aaron Larson. All rights reserved. No portion of this article may be reproduced without the express written permission of the copyright holder. If you believe you may lawfully use a quotation, excerpt or paraphrase of this article under the Fair Use exception to copyright law, except as otherwise authorized by the author of the article, you must cite this article as a source for your work and include a link back to the original article from any online materials that incorporate or are derived from the content of this article.