Workers’ Compensation laws are in place to ensure that every employee who suffers a work-related injury or illness arising out of and in the course of his employment is:
- Paid temporary and permanent disability benefits in a timely manner (i.e., wage loss benefits)
- Paid for reasonable and necessary medical expenses (i.e., medical benefits)
What happens when you have reached the point referred to as the “maximum medical recovery”, which in most cases is the day your doctor releases you from his/her medical care.
Reasonable Efforts to Return to Suitable Type Work
In order to have a claim for loss of wage earning capacity, you should make reasonable efforts to return to suitable type work. If you fail or refuse to make a legitimate effort to return to work, there may be a presumption that you have not endured loss of wage earning capacity.
Return to work obligations on the part of the employee can vary with each state’s requirements. In some states, employees are required to participate in vocational rehabilitation services.
In other states, an injured worker may not be obligated to take part in vocational rehabilitation. However, a refusal to participate in vocational rehabilitation may affect the employee’s eligibility for future workers’ compensation benefits.
Other Issues that Can Arise
There may be instances where the insurance carrier’s doctor disagrees with your treating physician about your injuries, and the insurer will wrongfully deny paying you or authorizing treatment based on what their doctor says. For example, if their doctor says you are not injured and can return to work, even if your doctor claims you need additional medical treatment before going back to work, the insurer may wrongfully terminate your benefits at that point.
Fill out a free claim evaluation or call us at 1-800-277-0300 to get started.