A Guide To Calculating Temporary Disability In California Workers’ Compensation

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In order to be eligible for workers’ compensation in California, an employee must have suffered a work-related injury or illness that has resulted in a “disability.” A disability is defined as any physical or mental condition that prevents an employee from performing his or her usual job duties.
There are two types of disability: temporary and permanent. Temporary disability (TD) is when an employee is unable to work for a temporary period of time due to his or her injury or illness. Permanent disability (PD) is when an employee is permanently unable to work due to his or her injury or illness.
To calculate your TD benefit, you will need your average weekly wage (AWW). Taking your total wages earned in the last four weeks before your injury/illness and dividing it by four calculate your AWW. If you have not been employed for at least four weeks, your AWW will be calculated using your old income.

What is “Temporary Disability” in California Workers’ Compensation?

Temporary disability” is defined in the California Workers’ Compensation Act as “the inability of an injured employee to perform his or her usual or customary work for which he or she is reasonably fitted by education, training, and experience because of the injury.” In other words, it is a period of time during which an injured worker is unable to do his or her job due to the injury.
The amount of Temporary Disability California benefits an injured worker receives is based on his or her “disability rating.” The disability rating is determined by a doctor and reflects the severity of the injury. For example, a worker who has a disability rating of 50% would receive half of his or her usual wages while temporarily disabled.

It is important to note that Temporary Disability benefits are not tax-free. The IRS in some states considers the benefits taxable income.

How do you calculate Temporary Disability benefits?

TD benefits are intended to replace a portion of your lost wages while you recover from your injury or illness. The number of your benefits will depend on your “average weekly wage” at the time of your injury. Taking your total wages earned in the four weeks prior to your injury and dividing that number by four calculate your average weekly wage.
For example, let’s say you earned a total of $2,000 in the four weeks prior to your injury. Your average weekly wage would be $500 ($2,000 ÷ 4). If you were unable to work for eight weeks after sustaining your injury, you would be eligible for $4,000 in TD benefits ($500 x 8).
In addition to wage replacement, TD benefits also cover the cost of reasonable and necessary medical treatment related to your injury or illness. These costs can include things like doctor’s visits, hospital stays, physical therapy, etc.

When do Temporary Disability benefits stop?

Temporary Disability California benefits can be paid for up to 104 weeks. However, there are some circumstances in which benefits may be cut off before the 104-week period is up.
If an injured employee is able to return to work on a part-time basis, their Temporary Disability benefits will be reduced by the number of their earnings from work. For example, if an employee is earning $200 per week from work while also receiving $400 per week in Temporary Disability benefits, their total benefits would be reduced to $300 per week.
In addition, if an injured employee is able to return to work on a full-time basis, their Temporary Disability benefits will stop entirely.
Finally, if an injured employee reaches maximum medical improvement (MMI) before the end of the 104-week period, their Temporary Disability benefits will also stop. MMI is the point at which an injured employee’s condition is not expected to improve any further with medical treatment.

How do you file a claim for Temporary Disability benefits?

In order to file a claim for TD benefits, you will need to fill out a workers’ compensation claim form and submit it to your employer. Your employer will then have 14 days to respond to your claim.
If your employer denies your claim, you can appeal the decision by filing a workers’ compensation appeal form.
Once your claim is approved, you will start receiving TD benefits within 21 days. These benefits will continue until you are able to return to work or reach maximum medical improvement (MMI).


In conclusion, calculating temporary disability in California workers’ compensation can be a complex process. There are a variety of factors that must be taken into account, and each case is unique. If you need assistance calculating your temporary disability, contact Pistiolas Law, We can help you navigate the process and ensure that you receive the benefits you are entitled to, you can also call us on (844-414-1768)

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