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South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Law Changes in 2017

January 4, 2017


For many, 2017 will bring a fresh start to several aspects of their lives. New Year’s resolutions bring change to our personal lives, but change is also coming to South Carolina Workers’ compensation law. The South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission has revised the maximum weekly compensation rate for on the job injuries.


What is the new compensation rate?


Starting January 1, 2017, the maximum amount a worker will be able to recover per week for an on-the-job injury is $806.92. For 2016, the maximum allowable amount per week was $784.03. The $22.89 increase reflects inflation and adjustments for cost of living.


How is the weekly maximum allowance calculated?


The maximum allowable compensation is calculated from the average weekly wage, which is an income figure calculated on all wages paid over the period of four quarters. There are a number of exceptions to average weekly wage calculations that influence the calculation. However, your average weekly wage that you receive after an on-the-job injury is limited to 2/3 (66.66 percent) of the average wage you earned during the last four quarters, capped by the maximum set by the SC Workers’ Compensation Commission.


What if I make more than the statutorily allowed maximum?


If you made more than the amount the legislature set as the maximum, you will not be able to recover in excess of $806.92 each week. For example, if you earned an average weekly wage of $700 during 2016, you would only be able to recover $466.67 a week during the duration of your workers compensation claim. If you earned $2,000 a week, your maximum allowable recovery per week would be $806.92 because it is the statutory maximum, even though 66.66 percent of $2,000 is $1,332. Calculating your maximum recovery amounts can be a difficult process. It is recommended that you consult an experienced injury attorney with any issues in your workers’ compensation case.


Other legal compensation changes coming in 2017


In addition to the maximum weekly wage recoverable under workers’ compensation claims, the state of South Carolina has adjusted the amount payable per mile driven while driving to and from a doctor. The new rate of reimbursement is 53.5 cents per mile, which is slightly lower than the rate in 2016. A full list of laws that were passed in 2016 and are going to go into effect in 2017 are available on the South Carolina legislature’s website.


How can an Aiken, SC injury attorney help with your case?


Even though the state Workers’ Compensation Commission approved an increase in the maximum allowable weekly wage, this is not a guarantee for what you will recover in your case. If you have been injured on the job, you may have to negotiate with insurance companies and your employer all while dealing with the possibility of missing work and ensuring that your medical expenses are being taken care of. The lawyers at Surasky Law can help you with all aspects of your workers’ compensation claim and help ensure you get the compensation you deserve.


Contact us today for a free consultation on your workers’ compensation case.




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