Alabama Workers' Compensation Laws

Whether you work in aerospace, manufacturing, car sales, or another one of Alabama's great industries, you work hard in the Heart of Dixie. But if you get injured at work, you should know that Alabama takes care of its own and has generous time limits for wage replacement. However, because there are caps on the amount of compensation you can receive, you should arm yourself with a strong defense by reading up on Alabama workers' compensation laws.

The table and accompanying information summarize the most important portions of Alabama workers' compensation laws.

Filing Time Limits

  • 2 years from the date of the injury or the date of the last compensation payment (§ 25-5-117)

Benefit Time Limits

  • For injuries lasting 21+ days: benefits for days 1-3 paid on day 22 (§ 25-5-59)
  • For injuries lasting fewer than 21 days, benefits begin on the 4th day (§ 25-5-59)
  • Temporary Partial Disability is limited to 300 weeks (§ 25-5-57(2))
  • Permanent Total Disability=no maximum number of weeks (§ 25-5-57(4))

Benefit Amount Limits

  • Maximums: For injuries occurring on or after 7/1/16, max=$832.00/week, min=$229.00 per week or the worker's full wages (State's Average Weekly Wage)
  • Temporary Total Disability: the lesser of:
  • Earnings during last 52 weeks ÷ 52 weeks X 66 2/3% or
  • the State's Average Weekly Wage (§ 25-5-57(1))
  • Temporary Partial Disability: 66 2/3% of the difference between the workers' avg. weekly earnings at the time of the injury and the avg. weekly earnings s/he is able to earn while partially disabled loss (§ 25-5-57(a))
  • Permanent Partial Disability: 66 2/3% of the worker's avg. weekly earnings during the number of weeks according to the type of loss (§ 25-5-57(3))
  • Permanent Total Disability: amount is the same as TTD

Other Limits

  • Some employees exempt (§ 25-5-50)
  • Medical claims are reviewed by medical dispute resolution (§ 25-5-77)
  • Most mental injuries are exempt (§ 25-5-1)

Workers Covered

If you work for an employer who regularly employs five or more employees, you are likely covered by Alabama’s workers' compensation laws. There are a few exceptions, however, including:

  • Domestic employees
  • Farm laborers
  • Casual employees
  • Employees of municipalities having a population of less than 2,000

Benefit Types

Workers' compensation in Alabama consists of two parts: compensation for medical bills arising out of a work-related injury, and wage-replacement compensation for wages lost from time away from work. Alabama provides wage compensation in varying amounts for varying periods of time depending on whether you are temporarily total disabled, temporarily partial disabled, permanently partially disabled, or permanently totally disabled.

Benefit Amount Limits

Your average weekly wages are equal to your earnings during the 52 weeks prior to your injury divided by 52 weeks. No matter what type of workers' compensation benefits you may be entitled to, the most you will be able to receive if you were injured on or after July 1, 2016 is $832.000.

If you are permanently partially disabled by a work-related injury, your will receive compensation based on the type of injury. If your injury is not specifically compensated by law but you suffered serious disfigurement, you may be entitled to 66 2/3% of your average weekly earnings for a period of time which the court may determine, but not exceeding 100 weeks.

What to Do If Your Claim Is Denied

If your injury is mental, such as post-traumatic stress disorder or chronic anxiety disorder, your claim may be denied. Fortunately, mental injuries and mental disorders which were produced or proximately caused by a physical injury are compensable in Alabama. An experienced Alabama workers' compensation attorney can help you navigate Alabama workers' compensation laws by helping you to best present the circumstances of your injury. So if your claim was denied for any reason, it’s in your best interests to consult with an attorney.

Additionally, if you wish to file a review based on medical issues, Alabama offers medical dispute resolution. Before you submit your disputed claim, contact Medical Claims Ombudsman Ruth Mitchell. You can reach her via e-mail at Ruth.Mitchell@labor.alabama.gov or by phone at (334) 353-9872.

Free Claim Review

Whether you are an Alabama or an Auburn fan, you believe that by working hard, you earn the right to play hard. But if working hard resulted in you being unable to work or play, allow the Southern hospitality ingrained into Alabama workers' compensation laws to take care of you while you recover. If your claim is denied or you are granted less compensation than you expected, allow an Alabama attorney the privilege of providing you with a free review of your workers' compensation claim.

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