Defending Your Rights And Future And Seeking The Compensation You Deserve

5 steps for navigating permanent total disability claims

On Behalf of | Apr 24, 2024 | Workers' Compensation

Permanent total disability is a situation where an employee gets hurt so badly at work that they cannot return to any job. If you experience such an injury, you could require support for an extended period, perhaps for life.

Understanding the benefits that are available for PTD is important for you as a South Dakota worker because it affects your income, future and family’s well-being.

1. Recognizing eligibility

The first step is to know if you are eligible for PTD benefits. In South Dakota, you must be an employee who experienced an injury so severe that you cannot engage in any type of work, whether your previous job or some other assignment. Your treating physician determines this by assigning you an impairment rating of 100%.

2. Gathering necessary medical documentation

The next step is to collect all your medical records to prove how serious your injury is. You need notes from your doctor saying you cannot work, test results and information about any treatment you have received. Without these documents, you might not be able to qualify, no matter how severe your injuries appear to the naked eye.

3. Understanding the claims filing process

Filing a claim involves filling out forms and sending them to the correct departments. In South Dakota, you must submit a claim with the Department of Labor and Regulation. Be extra careful to fill out everything correctly and send in documents before the deadline, or you could compromise your eligibility.

4. Dealing with potential denials

Sometimes, a claim for PTD benefits gets denied, and this can happen for many reasons. However, a denied claim does not mean you have to give up. You can ask for a review of the decision, and someone will take another look at your claim to see if the denial was a mistake.

5. Seeking legal assistance

Clearly, this process can become complex, which is why it can be a good idea to get help from a lawyer who deals specifically with workers’ compensation in South Dakota. An attorney can help you understand the process, fill out forms correctly and represent you if you need to appeal a denial.

Getting injured on the job can change your life, and you should be able to claim any benefits that you qualify for. By promptly working on your claim with a lawyer to guide you through the process, you can improve your odds of getting the support you need.