Under certain circumstances, some jurisdictions permit “wage stacking,” or adding together a claimant’s wages from multiple jobs, to calculate that claimant’s average weekly wage. Wage stacking increases a claimant’s average weekly wage, which increases a claimant’s workers’ compensation award.
The District of Columbia permits wage stacking if the claimant is performing services for both employers concurrently. Virginia permits wage stacking, but only for wages from similar employment. For example, Virginia would permit wage stacking for an injured worker working for two companies as an ambulance paramedic and as a clinician in a hospital emergency room. This is permissible because the duties and responsibilities required in each job overlap and because the employee’s mission in both jobs, providing emergency medical services, is the same. In contrast, Maryland prohibits wage stacking. These different approaches to wage stacking make DC a relatively desirable jurisdiction for injured employees deciding where to file workers’ compensation claims.