If you have a part-time job and are hurt at work, you might be worried about how much your disability payout will be. This is particularly true in Missouri, where disability compensation for injured workers is based on weekly earnings. In Missouri, there is good news for part-time workers who get hurt at work. There is a law that significantly increases the settlements for part-time workers that get injured on the job.
In general, when a part-time employee gets injured at work, the law requires that their compensation rate for permanent disabilities shall be based upon the average weekly wage of a full-time employee.
The law in Missouri requires insurance companies to calculate disability payments based on the earnings of a full-time employee – not based on the employee’s part-time wages. Unfortunately, most insurance companies don’t follow this rule, and most wounded workers are unaware of it.
This law is called the “Thirty (30) Hour Rule”. It is so named because, according to the law, an insurance company cannot base a settlement on less than 30 hours of work. The injured employee’s disability settlement may increase significantly due to this law.
Disability Settlements are Increased for Part-time Employees in Missouri.
Here are two examples of how this works in Missouri. One is the correct way, and the other is incorrect.
Incorrect Calculation for an Injured Part-time Worker.
A part-time worker earns $10 per hour and works 20 hours a week. The employee gets injured and suffers a 10% permanent partial disability. The insurance company calculates the employee’s average wage as $200 (20 hours x $10 per hour) and the compensation rate at $133.33 ($200 x 2/3). Under this scenario, the disability would have a value of $5,333.33.
Correct Calculation for a Part-Time Worker Using the 30-Hour Rule
With the help of an attorney, the same worker can get substantially more money using the correct compensation rate. If a full-time employee makes $15 per hour and works 40 hours a week, the average wage is $600 (40 hours x $15 per hour). The correct compensation rate is $400 ($600 x 2/3). The employee gets injured and suffers a 10% disability. With the increased compensation rate, the employee would be entitled to a settlement of $16,000. Three (3x) times more money the employee using the lower, part-time rate.
If you are an injured worker with questions about the 30-hour Rule, contact the workers’ compensation lawyers at McDuffey & Medcalf, LLC today.