Timing and Payouts in CA Workers’ Comp Unveiled

May 30, 2024

When a workplace injury occurs, a timely resolution of a work comp claim followed by a fair payout can mean the difference between a comfortable or agonizing recovery. The problem is that most injured workers don’t know what to expect when filing a claim, which only exacerbates the situation.

While having a highly proficient Los Angeles work injury attorney definitely can help take a lot of that stress away, it is just as important to know what, when, and how much you can expect from your work injury claim – which is exactly what this comprehensive guide is about. 

How long does it take the average work injury claim to be settled in the California workers’ compensation system & how much is the average settlement per case?

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The duration and average settlement amount of workers’ compensation claims in the state of California can vary significantly based on multiple contributing factors, including (but not limited to):

  • The complexity of the case;
  • The extent of the injuries;
  • The responsiveness of the involved parties.

Here’s an overview based on general trends:

Average Duration for Workers’ Comp Settlement

  • Simple Cases: For straightforward work injury cases in CA, where the work injury is minor, the injured worker quickly recovers, and there is little dispute, the claim will generally be settled within a few months (typically 6-12 months).
  • Moderate Cases: Cases involving moderate workers’ compensation injuries that require ongoing medical treatment and involve some disputes over benefits and/or coverage may take 12-18 months to settle.
  • Complex Cases: Complex cases, especially those involving severe injuries, permanent disabilities, or significant disputes between the worker, employer, and insurance company, can take 18 months to several years to settle.

Average Settlement Value

  • Minor Injuries: For minor injuries that do not result in permanent disability, settlements typically range from $2,000 to $20,000.
  • Moderate Injuries: For moderate on-the-job injuries that may involve temporary disability or partial permanent disability, workers’ compensation settlements usually range from $20,000 to $80,000.
  • Severe Injuries: For severe work injuries resulting in significant permanent disability (PD) or long-term medical care, settlements can range from $80,000 to several hundred thousand dollars or more.

Factors Influencing Work Injury Settlement Amounts

How long does it take the average work injury claim to be settled in the California workers' compensation system & how much is the average settlement per case
  • Extent of Injury: The severity of the work injury and the level of whole-person impairment or disability play a crucial role in determining the settlement amount. More severe injuries typically will lead to higher settlements.
  • Medical Expenses: The cost of past, present, and future medical treatments and surgeries significantly affects the value of the workers’ compensation settlement.
  • Wage Loss: Compensation for lost wages during the recovery period of the work injury and any future loss of earning capacity due to the work injury are included in the settlement calculation.
  • Permanent Disability (PD): The severity of PD, as determined by the state-licensed evaluator, will directly impact the settlement amount awarded to the injured worker.
  • Disputes: Disputes over the extent of the workers’ injury, necessary medical treatment(s), or the injured worker’s ability to return to work can extend the settlement process and affect the final settlement amount awarded to the injured worker.

What is the minimum and maximum payout for injured workers on total temporary (TTD) benefits in the State of California?

In the state of California, the minimum & maximum payouts for Total Temporary Disability (TTD) benefits are determined by California state law (Labor Code) and are adjusted annually based on changes in the statewide average weekly wage (SAWW). As of 2024, here are the details:

Minimum TTD Benefits for Injured Workers in California:

Minimum Weekly Payment: The minimum TTD benefit amount is 15% of the statewide average weekly wage (SAWW). For 2024, this amount is $230.95 per week.

Maximum TTD Benefits for injured workers in California:

Maximum Weekly Payment: The maximum TTD benefit amount is two-thirds of the employee’s average weekly earnings, subject to a cap based on the SAWW. For 2024, the maximum TTD benefit amount is $1,611.78 per week.

How are TTD Benefits Calculated?

TTD benefits are typically calculated at two-thirds (66.67%) of the worker’s average weekly earnings at the time of the injury, up to the specified maximum amount. If a worker earns less than the minimum benefit, they will receive the minimum amount.

Example Calculations:

  • Worker Earning Below Minimum: If an injured worker’s average weekly earnings are $200, they will receive the minimum TTD benefit of $230.95 per week.
  • Worker Earning Within the Range: If an injured worker’s average weekly earnings is $900, their TTD benefit would be calculated as follows: $900 × 0.6667 ≈ $600.03 per week.
  • Worker Earning Above Maximum: If an injured worker’s average weekly earnings are $3,000, their TTD benefit would be capped at the maximum of $1,611.78 per week, even though two-thirds of their earnings would be $2,000.
  • Annual Adjustments: The minimum and maximum TTD benefits are adjusted each year based on the SAWW. Therefore, it’s imperative to check the latest figures for the specific year in which your on-the-job injury occurred.

Which Los Angeles work injury attorney near me can help me settle the claim in the fastest & most rewarding way?

Settling a workers’ compensation claim in California can take anywhere from a few months to several years, even decades, depending on the complexity of the case. In addition, the average settlement amounts vary widely, ranging from a few thousand dollars for minor injuries to several hundred thousand dollars for severe injuries.

For these reasons, it is imperative to have a highly proficient legal representation during the process – and there’s no one better in the Greater Los Angeles Area than LA Accident Pros. Since our inception, we’ve helped thousands of injured workers realize maximum benefits in a timely and satisfying manner. Today, we’re here to do the same for you!

If you have any specific questions about your workers’ compensation case, the implications of filing a claim on future employment prospects, or would like more detailed information on work injuries in LA County and the US, reach out to one of our experienced legal professionals to schedule a free consultation.

Take a look at some of our recent settlements


for injuries sustained from a lift gate accident


settlement for a linen washer accident


for a truck driver sustaining stroke on the job


to the dependents of a restaurant cook for a death benefits case

View More Settlements

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  • Excellent attorney and a very wonderful staff. They were always available when I needed to talk about my case, They answered all my questions and treated me very respectfully and settled my case In as timely of a manner as possible. Thank you Peter and thank you Stephanie!


    by J.M. June, 2018.

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