Ohio Workers’ Compensation Glossary of Terms
Below is a limited glossary of terms that is used within the practice of worker’s compensation law.
Average Weekly Wage (AWW) – Is the basis upon which compensation benefits are distributed to injured workers. Excluding the first twelve weeks of a worker’s temporary total which are covered by the Full Weekly Wage benefit, AWW is determined by dividing the injured worker’s total earnings for the year before the injury by 52 weeks.
Aggravation – An injury resulting in additional impairment to a previously injured part of the body.
Base Period – Refers to either the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters prior to becoming unemployed.
Benefit Year – Refers to the period of time you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits. This time frame start on the date of injury and runs for 52 consecutive weeks which is the maximum period of eligibility to receive unemployment benefits.
Chronic Pain Syndrome – Is a psychological stress state, involving anxiety, depression and anger with an underlying significant level of genuine neurologically based pain.
Disability – Is the condition of being unable to perform in the field of ones vocational expertise as a consequence of physical or mental unfitness.
Disabled Workers’ Relief Fund – Is a fund that supplements the benefits received by disabled injured workers whose benefits fall below the current cost of living.
District Hearing Officer – Hold hearings and rules on disputed issues between the parties involved. The district hearing officer is considered the first level of decision making at the Bureau of Worker’s Compensation whose ruling are appealable to a staff hearing officer.
Exacerbation – Is an increase or temporary worsening, in the severity of a pre-existing disease or in any of its signs or symptoms.
Full Weekly Wage – Is the basis upon which compensation benefits are distributed to injured workers, constituting the first 12 weeks temporary total disability.
Industrial Commission – Is the State of Ohio’s governmental agency that oversees the proceedings of the Ohio Worker’s Compensation and the distribution of funds to injured workers.
Intentional Tort – Is when an employee is injured as a result of a known hazardous situation at his/her workplace, in which his/her employer knew of, or should have foreseen the danger of the situation that led to the injury.
Managed Care Organizations – Are companies that are certified by the Bureau of Worker’s Compensation to provide the delivery and management of healthcare to injured workers.
Maximum Medical Improvement – Indicates that either an injured worker has fully recovered from his/her injury or has reached a point where no more improvement is expected.
Occupational Disease – Is any recognized chronic ailment that is know to occur to workers in a given industry at a higher rate than occurs in the general population. An example would be the high rate of Black Lung Disease among coal miners.
Permanent Partial Disability – Is a permanent condition a worker suffers which does not cause the employee to become unable to work. The worker, however, will never completely heal and return to the state that existed prior to the injury. The BWC awards benefits for these types of permanent conditions.
Permanent Total Disability – Is a permanent condition that incapacitates you from performing the job duties for which you were trained and specialize. An injured worker need to apply for this type of benefit in order to receive an award and its not of an indefinite length.
Staff Hearing Officer – If any party is dissatisfied with the decisions of the District Hearing Officer, a hearing can be scheduled at this higher level of the claim process, to present their dispute.
Standard Recovery Period – The Department of Administrative Services sets a length of time allowed for specific injuries, illnesses or recovery from a medical procedure.
Statute of Limitations – Is a law which sets the maximum period of time in which one can file an action (lawsuit) against another party.
Temporary Total Disability – Is a benefit that is granted to an injured worker for lost wages as a result of not being able to return to work and perform their normal job duties.
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