An impairment benefit is a no fault lump sum payment designed to compensate for pain and suffering. To be eligible to receive an impairment lump sum payment, your level of impairment, expressed as a percentage of the whole body/person, must exceed 10%.
The impairment percentage is calculated by TAC after having you examined by medical specialists who have successfully completed an Accreditation course in the use of the impairment guides. Impairment percentages are calculated using the methods contained in the Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment – 4th Edition published by the American Medical Association. It is important to note that impairment is different from disability. The impairment guides do not assess disability. They only assess impairment. Whilst the impairment guides are said to be scientific, experience shows that the application of the guides by similarly qualified medical specialists often produces significantly different impairment outcomes. Expert legal advice concerning the impairment issue is strongly recommended.