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How Long Can Workers' Compensation Benefits Last?


If you've been injured on the job or suffered from an occupational disease, then you know how valuable workers' compensation is. Almost every South Carolina employee is presumed to be covered by workers' compensation, under the state's Workers' Compensation Act.

There are specific exceptions, but they are few; they generally include railroad employees, agricultural employees, certain real estate officers, and elected corporate officers.

Duration of Compensation

If you are a qualified employee, you can expect compensation for personal injuries that arose out of the course of your employment. Workers' compensation pays for:

  • Necessary medical treatment
  • Prescription medications
  • Lost wages during the period of disability
  • Permanent disability or disfigurement

If you are unable to work for more than seven days, you should be eligible for compensation at the rate of 66 2/3% of your average weekly wage. However, that is limited to 100% of South Carolina's average weekly wage, which is established annually by the South Carolina Employment Security Commission.

If you are disabled for more than 14 days, then you would be eligible for compensation starting with the date of your accident.

How long can someone receive workers' compensation? Can it go on indefinitely? Under South Carolina's workers' compensation law, the maximum award for total disability or death is limited to 500 weeks of compensation.

Permanent disability, includes:

  • Losing both hands or feet,
  • Losing both arms or legs,
  • The loss of vision in both eyes, or
  • Any combination of the above.

About Occupational Diseases

In South Carolina, if an employee is injured or killed due to an occupational disease, the case is treated as an injury by an accident. In this case, the employee, or the deceased's dependents may be entitled to compensation. However, a disease is only considered an "occupational disease" it if was caused by a hazard that is unique to a certain trade or occupation.

Contact Masella Law Firm, P.A. to arrange a personal case evaluation with our Columbia workers' compensation attorney. We look forward to serving you!

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