DI 52120: State Specific Workers' Compensation (WC) Procedures
A. Types of WC payments and payment provisions
Payments for all Alabama WC are calculated as 66 2/3 percent of the individual’s average weekly wage. The maximum is capped for most types of payments at 100 percent of the State’s Average Weekly Wage (SAWW).
The decisions of the Circuit Court regarding WC are conclusive and binding, subject to the right of appeal. From an order of judgment of the Circuit Court, any party may, within 42 days, file an appeal before the Court of Civil Appeals.
1. Duration of payments
Temporary Total (TT) – Duration of Disability
Temporary Partial (TP) – 300 weeks
Permanent Total (PT) – Duration of Disability
Permanent Partial (PP) – 300 weeks (see note)
NOTE: If scheduled PP disability follows or accompanies a period of TT disability resulting from the same injury, the TT is NOT deducted from the max number of weeks set for each partial disability. If it’s nonscheduled PPD, the period of TTD isdeducted. Scheduled PP payments are for loss of (or loss of use of) a certain body part, and are capped at $220 per week.
2. Lump Sum (LS)
LS judgments paid by the employer and received by the employee are final absent fraud or a mistake of fact.
3. Nonpayment of WC
If the injured employee refuses to comply with any reasonable request for examination, or refuses to accept the medical service or physical rehabilitation which the employer elects to furnish, the employee's right to compensation shall be suspended and no compensation shall be payable for the period of such refusal.
State employees with the exception of certain positions in the Mental Health Department are not covered under WC although the SSA-1709 may indicate it is being paid.
B. Cost-of-living Adjustments (COLA)
There are no provisions for a cost of living increase. The initial payment amount is locked based on the date of injury for the duration of the award.
C. Attorney fees
The attorney fees are limited to 15 percent.
D. Retirement insurance benefit (RIB) considerations
Alabama does not offset for receipt of any Social Security benefit.
E. Verifying WC:
If the individual cannot supply the necessary information there are other methods of verification.
1. The Carrier
Contact with the WC carrier is the preferred method of verification if the carrier is known.
2. Alabama Department of Industrial Relations
Available information may be limited.
All requests for information from this agency should be made through the servicing Field Office (program centers would use a PCACS Request for Assistance, not direct contact). This is because this agency charges a fee for each inquiry. Alabama Field Offices already have procedures in place to pay for the evidence when required.