If you have been injured by an accident at work, you will find it is in your best interest to meet with an attorney as soon as possible to be sure your rights are being protected. When you meet with an attorney, you will likely find that one of the first questions they ask you as they begin working on your file is “how much were you making at your job?”
Your income at your job prior to the accident is important to your workers’ compensation case because it allows your attorney to determine your “average weekly wage.” Your average weekly wage is the calculation used to determine your “comp rate,” which equals 66% of your average weekly wage.After your attorney determines your average weekly wage using your gross income, your comp rate (which is the amount you will be paid until you either return to work or a settlement is reached) will be determined by calculating 66% of your average weekly wage.
As you can see, your average weekly wage is the number that ultimately determines the amount of money you will be entitled to receive while you wait for a settlement in your case or wait to appear in front of the Industrial Commission. Your attorney will use an average of your gross income prior to your injury to determine the average weekly wage for your case.