Sometimes an on-the-job injury results in disfigurement, amputation or permanent loss of function of a specific body part. In those cases, the injury may be covered by specific loss benefits under Pennsylvania workers’ compensation law.
Workers receive specific loss benefits for a certain number of weeks for covered injuries regardless of how much work time was actually lost because of the injury. In addition to the specific loss benefit, each covered injury has a specific healing period during which benefits are paid. Healing benefits are paid first—specific loss benefits start once the worker returns to work or the healing benefit runs out.
The following are the number of weeks designated as a healing period for the loss of use of the following body parts, these numbers may vary year by year:
- Hand – 20 weeks
- Forearm – 20 weeks
- Arm – 20 weeks
- Foot – 25 weeks
- Lower Leg– 25 weeks
- Leg– 25 weeks
- Eye – 10 weeks
- Thumb – 25 weeks
- Fingers – 6 weeks
- Big Toe – 12 weeks
- Other Toes – 6 weeks
- Ear (total loss in either ear) – 10 weeks
- Ear (partial loss in either ear) – does not receive healing benefit
- Disfigurement of the head, neck or face – does not receive healing benefit
When a worker suffers several specific losses, the healing periods are not cumulative. Instead, the injured worker is entitled to receive healing benefits only for the longest healing period.
Losing the function of a body part due to amputation or a critical injury is very difficult physically, emotionally and financially. If you have been seriously injured at work, contact a workers’ compensation attorney at Schmidt Kramer for assistance. Our attorneys regularly work with clients who have suffered severe work-related injuries to ensure they get the compensation they deserve.
Give us a call today at 888-476-0807 for your free workers’ compensation case consultation. You may also wish to download a copy of our book Who Pays the Bills When You Are Injured at Work? for more information.