Do workers’ compensation payments have a waiting period?
For temporary income benefits (TIBs), yes. The law imposes a waiting period before the payment of workers’ compensation benefits may begin.
When an employer subscribes to workers’ compensation insurance, employees injured on the job are entitled to receive temporary income benefits during their period of disability. Disability in this context refers to an injured worker’s inability to earn their typical income, not to physical hardship.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance Benefits Waiting Period
Section 408.082 of the Texas Labor Code includes several important provisions related to the timing of workers’ compensation insurance benefits:
- TIBs cannot be paid unless an injury results in disability for at least seven days.
- The initial wage benefits payment is due to an injured worker on the 15th day following awareness or proof of disability. TIBs will then be paid in weekly installments.
- Weekly income benefits will begin to accrue starting on the eighth day after the date of injury. Should the disability persist for two or more weeks beyond the injury date, compensation will then be payable from the date the disability began.
- If the injury-related disability doesn’t begin immediately, or within eight days of the injury, the accident victim is still entitled to receive income benefits. In this case, TIBs start accrual on the eighth day after the disability began.
- Medical benefits aren’t subject to the time limits applicable to TIBs, so healthcare expenses are covered immediately.
- Benefits continue to be paid until the injured employee is either physically capable of earning pre-injury wages, maximum medical improvement has been achieved, or at the end of 104 weeks from the eighth day of disability.
Receiving Workers’ Compensation
If you suffered a disabling injury at work, you might be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits for your lost income and medical expenses. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you understand applicable waiting periods and ensure that you receive all of the benefits you deserve.