DI 52120.235 Tennessee Workers’ Compensation (WC)
A. Tennessee WC payment provisions
Payments are calculated as 2/3 of the worker’s average weekly wage. The payments are subject to minimum and maximum rates. For minimum and maximum rates visit: www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/wcomp/pdf/wc_2013legislation.pdf
1. Tennessee WC Lump Sum Payments (LS)
Tennessee law allows for amendments to WC awards at any time with approval of the court. Amended WC awards are valid in Tennessee. If the individual is awarded a lump sum and it includes an amendment refer to DI 52150.065 Subsequent Addenda to Lump-Sum Settlements.
B. Cost-of-living Adjustments (COLA)
Tennessee does not pay a cost of living increase or any other increase.
C. Attorney fees
The maximum attorney fee permitted is 20 percent. For Permanent Total (PT) disability cases the maximum attorney fee is 20 percent, but is limited to the first 400 weeks of benefits.
D. Retirement insurance benefit (RIB) considerations
Permanent Total will be offset due to the receipt of RIB once the individual reaches Full Retirement Age (FRA). There is no offset imposed prior to FRA so it may be to the individual’s advantage to elect reduced RIB at age 62.
Tennessee only offsets based upon the amount of RIB attributable to employer contributions. Tennessee determines that employer contributions are deemed to account for one-half of old age benefits. Therefore, only one-half of the RIB benefit will be considered when Tennessee computes the offset.
PT is the only type of Tennessee WC that is reduced due to RIB entitlement.
NOTE: Refer specific questions from an individual to the Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Division concerning the imposition and calculation of offset.
E. Verifying WC
Tennessee field offices and certain ODO technicians have the capability to obtain electronic WC verification. To obtain information, an ODO technician should contact their manager for referral to the proper technician.
Form SSA -1709 (Request for Workers’ Compensation/ Public Disability Benefit Information) may be sent to:
Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development
Workers’ Compensation Division
220 French Landing Drive
Nashville, TN 37243-1002
NOTE: The State will not reply unless you include a self-addressed postage-paid envelope.
www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/wcomp.shtml - Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Division
DI 52150.045 - For individual State maximum rates visit
DI 52150.060 - Prorating a WC/PDB Lump Sum Settlement
DI 52150.030 - Considering the RIB Option
DI 52150.050 - Excludable Expenses