An extended leave as a result of a significant injury occurring in the course of the workers employment can result in a worker needing to apply for Social Security Disability. Be mindful! If a worker receives Workers Compensation temporary disability benefits and Social Security Disability; the Social Security Benefits will be reduced. Once the temporary disability benefits end then Social Security will return to its normal rate.
The problem, if you are navigating through this maze, is that Social Security Benefits can take up to 16 moths to get. Usually the injured worker is receiving retro active benefits. If Social Security is unaware that the worker is or was receiving temporary disability benefits from workers compensation for the same period of time they may overpay and then later look for their money back. This can have devastating affects on the worker.
If a worker is so badly injured he/she starts receiving an award for total disability in workers compensation there is a impact on those benefits as a result of the person receiving Social Security. In this situation the benefits from workers compensation are reduced and the Social Security benefits remain at their regular rate until the person turns 62. In addition to the money issues there is the ever present concern regarding Medicare. For now it is fair to say, that if an injured worker has a work related injury they must allow the workers compensation carrier to deal with the medical issues and avoid if at all possible using their Medicare Card. Eventually, Medicare will need to be reimbursed and could cause an otherwise settled workers compensation case to be delayed. These issues are complicated and if someone has questions they should speak to a certified workers compensation law attorney.