There can be a lot of trepidation about returning to your job after filing a workers compensation claim against your employer but it is important for both the company and yourself personally to get back into the swing of things as smoothly as possible. The activity will benefit you mentally and physically and your employee will not be working shorthanded any longer.
You may have some questions about what to expect upon your return so we’ve taken the time to answer your 5 most common return to work questions we get asked daily.
1. I’m ready to go back. Is my job still guaranteed to me?
Worker’s Compensation Law does not mandate that your employer retain your job while you are on medical leave. In most, but not all, cases employers are very accepting of the employee returning to work. It is best to touch base with your employer during your recovery time so you’ll know where you stand when you are ready to return to work.
2. Can I continue my medical treatments after going back to work?
You definitely can and should continue to follow your doctor’s orders when coming off of a workers compensation hiatus. The cost of your medication and treatments may also be continued to be covered by your employer depending on the specifics of your case. You may also need to lose time from work for continued treatments and recovery. Workers compensation may continue to be paid under the policy of ‘Intermittent Time Loss’. You will need to report to the Worker’s Compensation Board, your attorney and your insurance company concerning your lost time and provide proof from medical excuses and pay stubs.
3. What happens if I come back and can’t do my job?
If you return to work and find your injury keeps you from completing the tasks at hand, you might have to request a collection of workers compensation benefits again. Depending on the extent of your injuries and the type of work available at your employer’s business, you may be able to ask your employer for a different set of job duties as you continue to recover. There may not be something else for you to do but it’s good practice to ask for the temporary job change. If this is not possible, the Worker’s Compensation Board offers resources for new job training and possible job placement.
4. Can other employers reject me because of my worker’s compensation claim?
Under the law, a potential employer is prohibited from asking you about worker’s compensation claim history. You are not to be denied a job based on a compensation claim that is current or long gone in the past. In the same way, your present employer can not fire you for filing a claim. If you are denied a job, or fired from your existing one due to compensation-related issues, contact your attorney immediately for assistance and advise.
5. I went back to work after an injury but never filed a worker’s compensation claim. What do I do now?
It is important to know that you have two years from the date of the injury to file a workers compensation claim. Even if you recovered and went back to work, you still have the right to file a claim and seek compensation for the time you were hurt and unable to work. It can be intimidating to work in a place you’ve taken legal action against but if you are following the regulations and the injury is legitimate, it is in your best interest to seek the legal advice of an experienced workers compensation lawyer before moving forward.