Attorney David J. King


Q&A: South Dakota workers’ compensation benefits

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2023 | Worker's Compensation

To many workers, securing compensation benefits in case of accidents or permanent disability is crucial. Fortunately, workers’ compensation laws in South Dakota cover almost all employers (with only limited exceptions). 

However, because most workers are not familiar with navigating the workers’ compensation system, it is not unusual to have some questions about these benefits.

What benefits are available?

The law provides several kinds of workers’ compensation benefits in South Dakota, including:

  • Medical care to treat the injury
  • Temporary disability
  • Permanent disability
  • Death benefits
  • Rehab/retraining

The type of benefits you may be eligible to receive depends largely on the extent of your injury and its impact on your ability to work.

How much will I receive?

Every case is different when it comes to calculating benefits. However, you can estimate the amount you could be eligible to receive after a work-related injury or illness by looking at your average weekly wage (AWW) for the last year.

Generally, benefits equal approximately two-thirds of your AWW. The minimum amount you can receive in workers’ compensation (as of July 1, 2022) is $488; the maximum is $975.

Depending on your specific case, you may also be eligible for reimbursement for meals and mileage.

How many days do I have to report a work injury?

In South Dakota, workers have three days (after they get injured) to report a work injury. If you fail to provide this notice, your claim can be denied.

This is why prompt reporting is necessary to ensure your rights to benefits. If your employer refuses to fill out a First Report of Injury form, you may contact the Division of Labor Management.

How long do I have to file for disability or death compensation?

 The filing time to qualify for disability or death compensation should be within two years after disablement or date of death. You must file the claim with the Department of Labor and Regulation within this period. Otherwise, an employer may not be liable for compensation or other benefits.

After any injury or illness you might experience on the job, it is not unusual to have more questions than answers. This information can provide some answers you might have right away, but you can also contact your doctor, employer and attorney for more detailed information.