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  • CA injury retirement

    Can anyone explain accurately how on duty injury retirement works for CA peace officers?

    For example purposes:

    A city police officer with 1 year on the job permanently injures his shoulder during a fight with a suspect. After surgeries, it's determined that he can't return to duty. What are the retirement figures for this type of situation? I've heard 50% of salary, and I've heard it's his retirement factor x years at the time - 1 year x 2.7% of salary.

    The latter sounds pretty ****ty for someone who is permanently injured as a result of duty but nothing would surprise me.

    Any insight?

  • #2
    I think it is 50% of the officer's current base pay scale. Also it can't be taxed, which really bumps it to like roughly 65 to 70%.

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    • #3
      50% tax free.

      The other figures you were looking at refer to someone who retires at retirement age and has a permanent work related injury. (50 for many but new contracts increase the age).

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      • #4
        As explained by my worker's comp attorney:

        An industrial disability retirement happens when an officer is unable to perform his duties due to a work-related injury. The disability rating has nothing to do with whether or not he will be retired. The only determinant is if he can't be cleared for unrestricted duty.

        An industrial disability retirement is 50% of the last year's base salary, and is not taxed. Even if the disability rating is higher than 50%, the pension is set by law at 50%.

        If the officer has enough time in PERS that he has accrued more than 50% in retirement benefits, then when he turns 50, he can collect pension benefits based on that difference. Example, an officer in a [email protected] department has 25 years on, is at least 50 years old and is injured and subsequently medically retired. He will receive 50% of the last year's base salary tax free. He will additionally receive 25% of the single highest or average of three highest years, according to his agency's contract, and will be taxed accordingly.

        The disability rating is determined by a complex formula that includes the bodypart, type of injury and occupation. The rating determines how much the injured worker receives in compensation for the injury.

        Ratings were drastically reduced when Governor Weinerschnitzel gutted worker's comp with his so-called reforms. I have a knee with almost of the cartilage removed and Grade 3 arthritis and an elbow that was reattached after totally detaching a triceps tendon. My disability rating was 14%. The medical examiner said that if it would have been prior to reform, the rating would have been 40-45%. I don't know what the settlement would have been, but for 14% it was around six grand.

        They do not stack ratings for multiple injuries, but go with the highest one.
        Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

        I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

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        • #5
          Copy ateamer's post and keep it. Best answer to your question.
          semper destravit

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          • #6
            One addition: Per my attorney, a worker's case may be re-opened within up to five years after it was closed. He recommended that, in my case, since I will be retiring less than five years after the settlement was signed, that we will refile at retirement time. That will result in a new evaluation, and likely increased benefits as the knee continues to degrade.
            Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

            I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

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            • #7
              So that $6K, is that in addition to the industrial disability retirement of 50%? So essentially a workers comp pay out on top of the medical retirement?

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              • #8
                Yes. If someone is medically retired, they will atill get the award based on their disability rating. It's not like winning the lottery. Most guys who medical out are nowhere close to 50, and don't have that many years in. Yes, their retirement will be untaxed, but when you consider the pay raises and differentials that they would have been getting at the end (detective/FTO/nigt shift differential/POST certificate pay), they're going to be pretty far behind of where they could have been.

                As someone who has had a number of work-caused injuries, surgeries, more down the road sometime (including a knee replacement in anywhere from five to 20 years), I can tell you that the compensation by way of award/settlement is fair. The injuries that result in the higher ratings are the ones that stick around for life.
                Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

                I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

                Comment


                • #9
                  Ok so just to clarify, one of my coworkers is out with a duty caused shoulder injury. IF he was unable to return to duty, and they retire him with one year on the job, he would end up with 50% of his salary tax free. They would then evaluate his disability percentage and award him a lump sum IN ADDITION to the separate retirement. At 26, with a relatively low salary, he would obviously need to continue working in the private sector to make ends meet. Is there a restriction to such employment, given he'd be receiving disability retirement?

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                  • #10
                    There is no restriction on private employment, as long as he is not using that shoulder in a manner that would show there is no disability. He can even get hired as a peace officer working for a non-pers agency, as long as he isn't violating the disability restriction, such as: investigator, admin, etc. those are ok.
                    Now go home and get your shine box!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Westcoast99 View Post
                      Ok so just to clarify, one of my coworkers is out with a duty caused shoulder injury. IF he was unable to return to duty, and they retire him with one year on the job, he would end up with 50% of his salary tax free. They would then evaluate his disability percentage and award him a lump sum IN ADDITION to the separate retirement. At 26, with a relatively low salary, he would obviously need to continue working in the private sector to make ends meet. Is there a restriction to such employment, given he'd be receiving disability retirement?
                      Huh, I could swear I posted to this thread four hours ago and now its disappeared.

                      The permanent disability award is not paid in lump sum. It is doled out in tax free increments every two weeks over a period of several years. When I retired in 2005 my permanent disability award was $103K, however it took them 6 1/2 years to pay it off. On top of that, your attorney gets 15% off the back end of your permanent disability award as his fee for representing you in your case. So State Fund pays you the first 85% over several years and the remaining 15% goes to your lawyer after that.

                      The only restriction on private employment is that you cannot be performing an activity that demonstrates you are no longer substantially incapacitated from performing the usual duties of the position you retired from.
                      Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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