When you sustain an injury at work, it can be a daunting experience. Your health and financial well-being may be at stake, and navigating the complex matter of workers’ compensation can seem overwhelming.
One of the most common questions that arise during such a situation is whether you can return to work while your workers’ compensation case is ongoing. By learning more about the workers’ compensation process, you can make the best decision about when to return to your job.
Understanding workers’ compensation
Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that provides financial and medical benefits to employees who sustain injuries on the job. The goal of workers’ compensation is to ensure that injured workers receive necessary medical care and wage replacement.
Returning to work
The ability to return to work during a workers’ compensation case largely depends on the nature and severity of your injury. Factors to consider when making this decision include:
- Medical Clearance: If your doctor believes that you can perform your job duties without risking further injury, they may provide a medical clearance for you to return to work.
- Temporary or Light Duty: If your employer can provide temporary or light-duty work within your doctor’s restrictions, you may be able to resume your job.
- Wage Benefits: Returning to work early may affect your workers’ compensation wage benefits.
- Rehabilitation: If your injury requires rehabilitation, your ability to return to work may hinge on your participation in rehabilitation programs and your progress.
While you might be eager to get back to work, keep in mind that doing so without clearance from your doctor can do much more harm than good for your workers’ compensation case.
Statistics show that there are, on average, approximately 4.9 million workers’ compensation claims filed each year. In all of these cases, the difference between securing a favorable settlement and meeting with denial is often one’s willingness to follow proper procedures.