Some common abbreviations used in workers’ compensation claims include:

ALJ (administrative law judge).

If your workers’ compensation claim was denied, this is the person who will hear the appeal.

AWW (average weekly wage).

This is the injured employee’s previous year’s earnings divided by 52. In Rhode Island, workers’ comp benefits are 75% of the worker’s AWW.

FCE (functional capacity evaluation).

This is a physical examination that tests a worker’s ability to perform job-related motions and tasks such as lifting, sitting, standing, bending, and walking.

FROI (first report of injury).

The FROI is the official start date of the workers’ compensation claim. The worker reports the injury to the employer, and the employer files a FROI with the state workers’ compensation agency.

IME (independent medical examination).

Workers may be asked to undergo this examination, which is administered by a doctor chosen by the insurance company. The exam may be used to assess a worker’s condition, determine if there are any long-term or permanent effects of injury, and dispute medical evidence provided by the treating physician.

IR (impairment rating).

If an employee’s injuries have healed but he’s still impaired, the treating physician will assign an impairment rating to the body areas impacted by the injury.

MMI (maximum medical improvement).

The point of maximum medical improvement is reached when the employee’s condition is not expected to improve with further treatment.


Christopher L. Russo
Helping Rhode Island personal injury victims for nearly three decades to get the compensation they deserve.