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West Virginia Worker's Compensation Benefits

Important Notice: The following overview of West 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 West 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 West Virginia.

Contents

Introduction

West 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 state fund, or employers may self-insure. Waivers are not permitted.

Special Employment Situations

Casual employers with fewer than three employees, and agricultural services with fewer than six employees, are exempt from the state's worker's compensation act. Employers may provide voluntary worker's compensation coverage for domestic servants.

Medical Benefits & Choice of Physician

Full medical benefits are provided to employees entitled to worker's compensation benefits, with no time or monetary limits. Initial choice of physician is made by the employee.

Disability Benefits Provided

Payments are made for temporary total disability (TTD) in an amount determined by a percentage of the worker's wage, subject to weekly maximum and minimum payment amounts. Payments may continue for up to 208 weeks.

Payments are made for permanent total disability (PTD) based upon a percentage of the worker's wage, subject to weekly minimum and maximum payment amounts. Payments for PTD may continue until the claimant attains the age necessary to receive Social Security Old Age Retirement benefits.

Payments for permanent partial disability (PPD) are made based upon a percentage of the worker's wage, subject to weekly minimum and maximum payment amounts.

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.

Physical and vocational rehabilitation benefits are available.

With certain constraints and filing deadlines, occupational hearing losses may be compensable.

Death Benefits Provided

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.

Limits on Attorney Fees

Attorney fees are limited by statute to 20% of a claimant's or dependent's award, with a 208 week limit.