How Soon Should I Go Back to Work After an Injury?
Author: Auger Law | May 4th, 2016
Many people who end up winning a successful claim for workers’ compensation in North Carolina return to work. While there are definite benefits to returning to your job, there are some things to consider before you do. Here are a few questions that we typically receive from clients who are ready to get back to work.
1. What are the benefits?
Typically, returning to work means that you are once again receiving a steady paycheck. For many people, it means a return to their social circle. It also means that you are back in line for pay raises and promotions should any be available.
2. What happens to my compensation payments?
If you return to work, your workers’ compensation payments may cease. If, however, you return to work and make less than you did before your injury, you may be able to file a claim for a “reduced earnings” benefit. This will make up the gap in your new pay.
3. Can I still follow through with my medical care?
Absolutely. If your doctor recommends ongoing care or treatment for your work-related injury, do not stop that treatment. Going back to work has no bearing on your ability to get better.
4. Who do I tell that I’ve returned to work?
Returning to work is not something that is immediately known. You will need to contact the workers’ comp board and the insurance company that has been making payments to you. If you have an attorney, they can handle this for you.
5. Do I get paid for days missed that are related to my injury?
When people are absent from work due to their injuries, they are given benefits due to “Intermittent Lost Time.” Keep careful records and be sure to tell the workers’ comp board and insurance company why you are missing work.
6. Does my employer have to hold my job?
Your employer is not required by law to keep your job open for you. It is important that you keep in contact with your employer to keep them apprised of your status. If you have a good relationship with your boss, they may choose to keep your position available and waiting for you. If not, you can reasonably expect to be hired back in a different position.
Do not be in a hurry to return to work if you are injured, but don’t drag your feet if you are medically able to return. If you are able to perform your job duties without risk to your health or well-being, it is typically in your best interest to return to your job.
If you need assistance with a workers’ compensation claim, contact our office. A member of our team will provide you with a free case evaluation. Call now or browse our website for more information about our firm and how we can assist you.