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Little Known Special Benefits (for Injured Workers With Prior Surgeries)

| May 4, 2021 | Back and neck injuries, Injuries, Joint Replacements, Shoulder Injury, Work Injury, Workers' Compensation, Workplace Injuries

Wisconsin provides an additional benefit for injured workers who have prior surgeries or conditions.  If an injured worker, because of the work injury, has a permanent disability equal to 200 weeks of benefits, then additional benefits may be due after the claim resolves.  A 200 week benefit can be the result of a 2-level spine fusion, a knee or hip or shoulder replacement, or a significant head injury.  If the permanency totals more than 200 weeks, AND THE WORKER HAD A PRIOR SURGERY OR CONDITION THAT ALSO RESULTED IN AT LEAST 200 WEEKS OF PERMANENCY, then additional benefits are due from Wisconsin’s “Second Injury Fund.”  The prior disability need not be from a work injury.  It can be from any source whether work-related or not (an injury at home, a sports injury, a congenital defect, etc.).  So, for example, a person who has a work-related 2021 knee injury resulting in a knee replacement would be entitled to a benefit under workers’ compensation of $76,925.  If that person had a prior injury (either a knee or a hip replacement, a spine surgery, or a significant head injury) resulting in an additional 200 weeks of permanency, after the workers’ compensation claim resolves, the worker can present an additional claim from the State of Wisconsin’s Fund for a similar amount of money.  This little known benefit exists whether the work injury is contested or conceded (whether the insurance company agrees or disagrees with its work-relatedness).

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