How much is a leg worth in Colorado?

Mar 11 2015

Look down at your legs. How much are they worth to you? Probably quite a bit. Be warned, however, that no matter how much they are worth to you, they are undoubtedly worth quite a bit less to a workers’ compensation insurer here in our state.

If someone loses a leg in a workplace accident in Denver, for instance, the maximum compensation available is $162,869. Compare that to Alabama, however, where the most you can get from workers’ comp for an amputated leg is $44,000, according to ProPublica.

ProPublica is a non-profit news organization that does investigative journalism in the public interest. They recently dove into workers’ comp data from all 50 states with NPR (National Public Radio).

Because each state has its own workers’ comp system with its own laws and values, a person losing a limb here could receive much more — and in some cases, much less — than a person in another state.

In Colorado, maximum compensation for an arm is again $162,869. In Texas, that same limb calls for compensation of $108,360, while it would result in payment to a California worker of $190,603, and in Mississippi, a payment of 92, 718. Same exact limb, same exact injury, and yet completely different levels of compensation.

ProPublica points out that it’s a bit like looking at a picture of Angus beef chart, with different portions worth different amounts.

It is more than enough to make workers feel as they are commodities rather than people. To avoid being treated as a commodity in a dispute over needed and deserved workers’ compensation benefits, discuss your options with a Denver attorney experienced in this complex area of law.