Permanent functional impairment (PFI) benefits

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If a work injury leaves part of your body not functioning as it did before the injury, you may have a permanent functional impairment (PFI) and be eligible for a lump-sum payment. Learn what a PFI is, how the PFI award amount is calculated, and when you may get an annual independence allowance or disfigurement PFI award.

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If a work injury leaves part of your body not functioning as it did before the injury, you may have a permanent functional impairment (PFI) and be eligible for a lump-sum payment. A PFI happens when there is a permanent loss of physical or mental abilities because of a work injury. An example is the loss of a finger or permanent brain damage.

This is a one-time award. You receive it only once unless your condition worsens. You will receive the award even if we are not paying you earnings loss benefits and even if you are getting Canada Disability Plan payments.

There is no age limit on PFI awards. You can receive a PFI award after age 65.

The minimum financial award is $2,200. The maximum is $45,200.

The dollar amount of the award is based on how much full function you have lost. We wait until you reach maximum recovery before determining the degree of lost function. This is because this is a one-time award. The payment may not cover your true loss if we pay the award before you reach maximum recovery.

To determine when you’ve reached maximum recovery, we:

  • Use medical information in your claim file.
  • Use standard recovery timelines for your type of injury.
  • May give you a physical examination.
  • May use a panel of medical specialists to help make the decision.

Your loss of function is expressed as a percentage of full body function. Each PFI award is a percentage of the maximum award. No single award can be less than the minimum or more than the maximum.

PFI review

Your condition may be reviewed if your level of impairment changes. You may receive an additional award if we find an increase in impairment. We will not ask you to repay us if your condition has improved.

The review will help us decide if you qualify for an annual independence allowance to help you live independently, and other benefits. An independence allowance is a percentage of the PFI.

Contact

Contact information

Contact a WCB representative to find help.

Operations division