If you receive worker’s compensation for injury sustained at your job, it may impact your current income standing and how your assets are divided. In addition, if you are divorced or getting a divorce and you are required to pay child support, then worker’s compensation may affect your payments.
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance provided by a company for wage replacement and medical benefits in the case that an employee is hurt while on the job. An employee is eligible for these benefits only if the injuries were related to the duties required of the employee, and if the employee was complying with company policy. In such case, the employee will likely receive a compensation award. Workers’ compensation is meant to replace what would usually require a personal injury claim.
Worker’s Compensation and Divorce Proceedings
Because some workers’ compensation can significantly impact your financial situation, it is likely to be considered in a divorce proceeding. The effect in which it can have may vary by state and the conditions of the award. If the state considers workers’ compensation as a personal injury award, then the following are ways the court might treat the case:
- Compensation received before or after the marriage is not considered marital property, and therefore, cannot be divided.
- Compensation received during the marriage is considered marital property if the state considers workers’ compensation as a replacement for lost wages.
- The portion of the workers’ compensation that is for medical bills and lost wages will be considered marital property.
- If the state considers workers compensation as disability pay, then the award money will be considered marital property.
Workers’ Compensation and Child Support
Workers’ compensation award money that is considered separate property will be considered income, meaning that it is considered when the courts determine child support payments. If your injury hinders your ability to work, workers’ compensation will cover lost income, meaning that the award will be considered as your normal income. Therefore, child support payments will not be excused because of the injury. If you have missed payments, then a portion of the award will be used for overdue payments. In addition, award money exceeding medical bills or lost wages will also be considered as income, so it may be that you are required to pay more in child support after receiving workers’ compensation.
If you are making lower wages than before, then you will need to request from the court a reduction in child support payments. To avoid potential problems, such as this, after receiving workers’ compensation, it is advised to hire a child custody lawyer Flower Mound, TX trusts. They can help you determine how your workers’ compensation award will be allocated, and how it might affect your child support payments. In addition, they can represent you to ensure that your rights are protected.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at Scroggins Law Group for their knowledge about child support payments and child custody.