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Higher wages lead to increased comp benefits in California

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The Oakland, California-based California Workers’ Compensation Institute says a boost in the state’s average weekly wage will increase workers comp benefits, according to a statement released Wednesday. 

California’s state average weekly wage, or SAWW, rose more than 3.6% to $1,206.92 in the year ending March 31, 2017, as reported by the state Department of Labor. The institute stated on Wednesday that as a result, state law mandates subsequent increases in temporary total disability and permanent total disability rates for 2018 work injury claims and other workers comp benefits.

Currently, the institute reports California’s TTD and PTD rates maximum rate is $1,172.57 per week. The institute calculates that the increase in the SAWW reported by the Department of Labor means the maximum will rise to $1,215.27 per week for claims with injury dates on or after Jan. 1, 2018. 

State law also ties minimum weekly TTD and PTD rates to SAWW increases. Minimums will rise from the current $175.88 per week to $182.29 for claims with 2018 injury dates, the institute also reported, confirming the new rates for 2018 injury claims with the state Division of Workers’ Compensation.