Receipt of Social Security disability and workers compensation.
The Philadelphia work accident law firm PearsonKoutcher, LLP prides itself on representing individuals who have been injured in some kind of work accident and need workers compensation benefits. Nevertheless, we are often asked questions about Social Security disability from our clients and must explain the impact receiving Social Security disability benefits has on their pending workers compensation claim. It is important to know that there is no prohibition in the law to receive workers compensation benefits and Social Security disability benefits at the same time. There is never an offset against workers compensation benefits when the injured worker is also receiving Social Security disability benefits. There is a reduction in the amount of Social Security disability benefits that same person would receive, however.
Injured workerswho receive both Social Security disability benefits and workers’ compensation benefits may have a more difficult time entering into a compromise and release (settlement) of their workers compensation case. This is because an injured worker who receives Social Security disability benefits will most likely become a Medicare beneficiary at some point. If an injured worker receives a settlement over $250,000 and is likely to become a Medicare beneficiary within 30 months, or receives a settlement over $25,000 and is a already a Medicare beneficiary, the parties to the compromise and release must negotiate a specific amount of money to fund future medical treatment called a Medicare set aside if the case is going to settle properly and consistent with the regulations established by CMS. The amount of money required to fund a Medicare set aside account varies from case to case and can be very expensive based upon the nature of the injuries and the type of treatment received and recommended in the future. Practically speaking, when the settlement is negotiated, if money must be placed into a set aside account, the insurance company may not offer as much money to the injured worker when settling the case.
One other potential problem for injured workers receiving Social Security disability benefits is the automatic conversion of Social Security disability benefits to Social Security retirement benefits when the injured worker becomes 66 years of age. If this occurs, the workers compensation insurance carrier can take a credit (reduce)against Worker’s Compensation benefits up to 50% of the amount of Social Security disability benefits.
The coordination of different kinds of benefits is critical when representing a client involved in a work-related accident. The attorneys at PearsonKoutcher, LLP have over three decades of experience representing injured workers in work-related accidents and understand the complexities of receiving multiple benefits and the importance of coordination of benefits.
Jonathan B. Koutcher, Esquire
Email Jon: Jon@pearsonkoutcherlaw.com
The Philadelphia Workers Compensation attorneys at Pearson Koutcher, LLP, are dedicated to the singular goal of securing maximum compensation and full benefits entitled to injured employees under the laws of Pennsylvania. Their years of experience as seasoned, skillful trial lawyers and negotiators, along with their compassion and diligent understanding of the significant impact a workplace accident can have on an injured worker’s life, motivate the attorneys of Pearson Koutcher, LLP, to approach each new client individually, with meticulous consideration to their specific individual considerations and circumstances. Call our office today at 215-627-0700 or email us to discuss the particular facts of your Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation matter.