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How Much Does Workers Comp Pay In California

Last updated: November 19, 2023

With workers’ compensation insurance, the legal liability of an employer was sidelined in exchange for the employee’s no-fault insurance. Employees are now covered in case a work-related accident occurs, and employers are protected from legal action. 

Before 1911, there were no state laws that mandated and governed workers’ compensation. Employees had to sue their employers if they ever got injured or contracted an occupational illness. This meant disaster for both sides, as injured employees did not receive the benefits they needed to recover on time, while employers experienced financial ruin from the ensuing lawsuit. 

In this article, we’ll answer the question, “how much does workers comp pay in California?” along with the benefits included.

What Are Included In Workers’ Compensation California

Your place of employment must protect your safety, regardless of your industry. As a result, most firms provide their staff with a handbook, safety instructions, safety gear, and downtime. Despite this, accidents still happen. Depending on the work-related injury or medical condition, an individual may be eligible for workers’ compensation. 

Medical Care Coverage

The insurance provider for your employer should start providing benefits for your medical care as soon as you notify them of the injury and submit a workers' compensation claim. Under workers’ comp laws in California, the insurance company is still legally obligated to cover up to $10,000 of your medical expenses while the claim is being evaluated, even if it eventually gets rejected. 

Temporary Disability Benefits

In California, if your doctor certifies that your work-related illness or injury prevents you from doing any of your work duties for an extended period of time, you are eligible for temporary disability (TD) benefits for up to 104 weeks. Unless you are hospitalized or out of work for more than 14 days, the payments won't start until you’ve missed work for three days. If you’ve been injured this year, you may qualify for temporary disability benefits worth $364.30 to $2,428.72, depending on your average weekly income. 

Permanent Disability Benefits

If your physicians have determined that you cannot work due to work-related injury or occupational illness, you may qualify for permanent disability benefits. Your treating physician must declare your medical condition stationary and permanent for you to be eligible. Since 2014, the maximum and minimum permanent disability compensation per week has been the same in California; $240 to $435, depending on your weekly wage. 

Supplemental Job Displacement Benefit

In California, if your employer does not provide you with modified, alternative, or regular work within 60 days of a medical report stating that your accident resulted in a partial disability, you may qualify for supplemental job displacement benefits. Once your claim is approved, you can receive a voucher for $6,000 as a displacement payment. 

Death Benefits

In the event that an employee dies from a work-related injury, qualified dependents will be entitled to death benefits. The compensation amount for this type of workers’ compensation benefit is based on two factors, namely, the number of eligible survivors and the date when the deceased employee was injured or contracted the illness. On average, dependents of California employees may receive a minimum of $250,000 up to a maximum of $320,000

How Much Does Workers Comp Pay In California: The Average 

Generally, workers' compensation settlements are intended to pay for any medical expenses incurred due to a work-related accident. It is likely that your workers’ comp pay will be less if you only sustained a minor injury. On the other hand, the settlement will be much larger if the injury requires extensive medical treatment. There is no exact amount, as settlements depend on the circumstances of your work-related injury and resulting medical condition. However, California workers' compensation pay, on average, ranges from $2,000 to $20,000.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some commonly asked questions regarding workers’ compensation benefits in California.

Is it possible to lose health insurance while on workers' compensation?

Unfortunately, it is possible. If you are already a recipient of workers’ compensation benefits, then your employer is not legally required to continue paying for your medical expenses and health insurance. 

What is the average settlement time for a California workers' compensation case?

There is no exact answer regarding the amount of time it takes for a workers’ comp claim to be settled due to the complex processes involved. However, on average, claims could last 30 days before approval or rejection. 

How is workers’ comp pay in California calculated?

The amount of workers’ comp pay employees in California receive varies. This is because it is calculated based on a worker's average income per week. State laws require employers to provide workers’ comp benefits worth 66% of an employee’s weekly wage.

Aside from answering the question, “How much does workers' comp pay in California?” you should also read about the workers’ compensation 90-day rule in this Disability Help article.

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Cheri Hermanson
Cheri leads our team of writers in producing the best quality content there is regarding society and disability, most especially those that helps ease the quality of life for our differently-abled loved ones.
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