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If your on the job accident, injury or illness will cause you to no longer be able to work, it is considered a permanent disability. Workers' compensation can, in some states, roll over into long term disability payments. These payments are usually a smaller percentage of your former pay, and since they are indefinite, take a lot longer to be approved. You may also continue to be covered for workers' comp regarding your future medical bills. Once you have been considered permanently disabled, another option is to apply for social security disability.