What Happens When You Reach Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI)?
Maximum medical improvement (MMI) is a term used to indicate that you have reached the point of recovery where your medical condition is as good as it will get. But what happens when you reach MMI while receiving workers’ compensation benefits? Are you no longer entitled to those benefits?
If your treating doctor says that you have reached Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), you might want to speak with an experienced attorney to discuss how reaching MMI will affect your workers’ compensation case. Our Maryland workers’ compensation attorneys at Berman | Sobin | Gross LLP can help you protect your right to fair compensation at all stages of the workers’ comp process.
What Does MMI Mean?
When you are injured on the job and your doctor determines that you can no longer work, then you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. According to Maryland Code, Labor and Employment § 5-102, a successful claim will usually cover medical expenses and partial payment of lost wages.
These benefits may include weekly payments or lump sum payments, depending on the severity of your injury. The goal of these payments is to help you financially while recovering from your injury so that you can eventually return back to work.
Once a doctor has determined that your injury has reached a point where it will not improve any further, they will declare that you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). This means that although your condition may stabilize and remain unchanged in the future, it is unlikely to improve any further with further treatment or intervention.
What Happens Next?
Once MMI is declared by your doctor, they will assign an impairment rating which will determine if and how much money you are entitled to receive in workers’ compensation benefits. The impairment rating assesses both physical and psychological impairments resulting from the job-related injury and assigns a percentage based on how much functional ability was lost due to the injury. For example, if you were permanently disabled due to an accident at work, you could possibly receive up to 100 percent of your wages as part of workers’ compensation benefits.
In some cases, such as when someone has suffered only minor impairments due to their injuries, they may be able to return back to their job with no restrictions whatsoever once MMI has been declared. In other cases, there may be certain restrictions placed upon them about how long they can work each day or what type of activities they can perform at work.
It all depends on the individual situation and depends on factors such as age at the time of injury and pre-injury wages versus post-injury wages. Ultimately, once MMI has been declared by a doctor, then it’s up to their discretion whether someone should be able to return back to their job or not—and if they do, then there may be certain restrictions placed upon them moving forward.
Will Your Workers’ Compensation Benefits Stop?
Reaching maximum medical improvement (MMI) while receiving workers’ compensation benefits does not necessarily mean that those benefits will stop. Rather, it just means that the doctor has determined that no further treatment or intervention is necessary for recovery from your job-related injury or illness at this time.
Contact Berman | Sobin | Gross LLP For Legal Counsel
Have you reached Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI) and wonder what it might mean for your workers’ compensation case? Consult with our skilled workers’ compensation attorneys at Berman | Sobin | Gross LLP to discuss the details of your case and determine whether or not you can continue receiving workers’ comp benefits despite reaching MMI. Call 800-248-3352 to talk about your case during a free consultation.