Temporary Disability Benefits

What are temporary disability benefits?

Temporary disability benefits are paid by an employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier, but only after you’ve been injured and the company has accepted liability for your injury. You must have suffered a work-related injury or illness in order to receive temporary disability benefits.

Temporary disability benefits come in two flavors: partial and total. Partial disability benefits typically provide partial wage replacement. total disability on the other hand, provides for payment of two-thirds of the injured workers pre-injury earnings for up to 104 weeks.

If you’re injured on the job and qualify for temporary disability, your employer should continue paying you at least part of your regular salary while you recover from the injury.

  • Temporary Partial Disability: Partial disability usually pays a portion of your pre-injury earnings if you’re unable to work your full hours due to your work injury. This is usually paid while you recover from your work injury or illness that prevents you from working your full hours.
  • To get California temporary disability benefits,
    1. a doctor must say that you cannot work or are limited in the kind or amount of work you can do. As a result, a doctor may place you on certain work restrictions or modified duties.
    2. Your employer must decide if it has any modified work that you can do that complies with the doctor’s work restrictions.
    3. Your treating physician will see you every, on average, every 45 days and make recommendations about your work restrictions and your ability to work.

How long does temporary disability benefits last?

Temporary disability benefits in California are capped at 104 weeks within five years of the date of accident. However, in certain cases, an injured worker may qualify for up to 240 weeks of temporary total disability or temporary partial disability. Call us today for a free consultation.

Temporary disability benefits in California are dependent on your doctor’s recommended work restrictions and your employer’s ability to work around those restrictions. In addition, there are limits that the state of California has placed on how long you can receive temporary disability.

  • Events that stop temporary disability benefits:
    1. The employer is able to accommodate the work restrictions or provide the injured worker with a different job assignment that complies with the doctor’s restrictions.
    2. The employee obtains another joe, with a different employer, and gets a pay increase and makes more than what he did while working for the former employer
    3. a doctor advises that you can return to work, or discharges from further medical treatment.
    4.  your condition stabilizes, and you become eligible for permanent disability benefits.

How to calculate temporary disability?

If you are unable to work at all, or if your employer is unable to accommodate your work restrictions, then you should qualify for temporary total disability, or Temporary partial disability.

  • For purposes of determining how much temporary total/partial disability you may qualify for, your average weekly earnings need to be calculated. If you have concurrent employment (multiple employers) the amount received from the second employer may also be taken into account. Even if you receive commission payments or receive a variable amount each week an experienced attorney should be able to calculate your average weekly earnings in order to determine how much you may be able to qualify in benefits.

Amounts for temporary partial disability, or temporary partial disability, will be two-thirds of your average weekly pay based on your average weekly earnings. Based on how much you earned, the maximum and lowest amount of temporary disability, or partial disability, that you can receive varies every year. As of 2022, the maximum temporary disability is $1,539.71 per week, and the minimum is $230.95 per week. This data is available on the Department of Industrial Relations

What if I disagree with the doctor’s work restrictions or disability status?

If you disagree with your doctor’s, or a doctor’s, work restrictions or disability status, you can appeal their decision. This means that another, usually a neutral doctor or a Panel Qualified Medical Examiner doctor, will review your case and decide if they agree with the initial assessment.

How can I apply for temporary disability benefits in California?

Usually, you will need a doctor’s determination. A doctor may place you on work restrictions or may take you off work completely and place you on total temporary disability. Therefore, obtaining temporary disability benefits, either total or partial, will depend on the doctor’s report and, in some instances, whether your employer is willing to accommodate your work restrictions.

It may require someone knowledgeable in the field to put these factors together to get you the benefits you need to pay your bills while recovering from your injury. you can find help by contacting us today!


If you get injured on the job, you may be eligible to receive temporary disability benefits, either partial or total, while you recover. As insurance companies will usually argue that an injured worker is not entitled to benefits, we strongly recommend you to speak with a season attorney or give us a call for a free consultation.


The content and views expressed herein is for information only and may not be accurate AND does not constitute legal advice or legal representation. If you have questions, you should contact our office immediately or should speak with an attorney as soon as possible.

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