Returning to work following an injury you suffered on the job is always a tough predicament, especially if you have been away from work for a prolonged period. It can be challenging getting back into the swing of things, especially if your employer does not have a policy or process in place to help injured workers return to work. Below, you will find important information for those returning to work following an injury so that you have an understanding of what to do once cleared by the doctor.
When Do I Need to Go Back to Work?
This is a common question many people injured on the job wind up asking. Do they return to work when they feel better? Do they have to wait until they are cleared by the doctor? The answer is simple; the doctor has to clear the employee to return to work. This includes returning to work on light duty, not returning to work yet, or returning to work at full-strength. You can be sent back to work by the doctor even if you are still going to physical therapy. This is what’s known as light duty.
Be sure to read all the paperwork provided by the doctor as it might state a date you can return to work even if the doctor never told you during the appointment. If you miss the date you can return to work it can severely impact your workers’ compensation benefits. You must notify your employer when the doctor says you can return to work.
Stick Within Your Limits
When cleared to return to work, be sure you stick within your limits, especially if the doctor said you need to remain on light duty for a specific period. Provide a copy of the work restriction paperwork to your employer and to the representative from the workers’ compensation insurance company.
You Can Be Fired After Suffering a Work Injury
Believe it or not, you can be fired after suffering a work injury. There are some employers who simply cannot provide the same job at the same pay for an employee who was injured on the job once they are ready to return to work. The majority of large companies have policies in place that outline how an employee can return to work following an injury they suffered on the job. However, smaller companies might not have these policies or even a plan in place to help employees. Should you be unable to return to the same job you once held, you are at the mercy of the workers’ compensation insurance company unless you are represented by a workers’ compensation attorney.
When Do I Need an Attorney?
It’s a smart move to consult an attorney not long after you’ve been injured on the job in New York. Doing so will help protect your rights and fight the workers’ compensation system so that you receive the compensation you deserve. You might be eligible for vocational rehabilitation from workers’ compensation if you cannot return to the job you previously held before getting injured.
Contact a New York City Workers’ Compensation Lawyer to Discuss Your Work Accident Case in New York
Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a work accident in New York? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive workers’ compensation attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. Proner & Proner represents clients injured because of workplace accidents in Queens, the Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn, and throughout New York. Call 212-500-1003 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 60 E. 42nd Street, Suite 1503 in New York, NY 10165 as well as offices in Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Bethel, Connecticut.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.