Virginia Worker's Compensation Benefits
By Aaron Larson
Important Notice: The following overview of Virginia'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 Virginia'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 Virginia.
- Special Employment Situations
- Medical Benefits & Choice of Physician
- Disability Benefits Provided
- Death Benefits Provided
- Limits on Attorney Fees
Virginia'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 private insurance carrier, or employers may self-insure. Waivers may be permitted.
Non-agricultural employers with fewer than three employees are exempt from the state's worker's compensation act. Employers who regularly employ two or more full-time employees must provide worker's compensation coverage to their agricultural employees. Domestic servants are excluded from 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 employee's choice of physician is by selection from a list maintained by the employer. The list may include chiropractors.
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 may continue for up to 500 weeks.
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 the duration of the disability.
Payments for permanent partial disability (PPD) are made based upon a percentage of the worker's wage, subject to a weekly maximum payment amount. Payments for PPD may continue for up to 500 weeks.
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 severely marked disfigurement of the body resulting from an injury not otherwise compensated by the schedule.
Physical and vocational rehabilitation benefits are available.
With 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, and there is limited reimbursement for out-of-state transporation of the decedent to the place of burial.
Attorney fees for claimants are approved by the agency on a case-by-case basis. In certain cases, the attorney fee may be added to the award.
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.