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Workers’ comp and returning to work

On Behalf of | Dec 15, 2023 | Workers' Compensation

Workers’ compensation is a safety net designed as a pick-me-up for employees in case of work-related injuries or illnesses. Employers contribute to this insurance, ensuring they have a financial reservoir for medical expenses and a portion of lost wages. Prompt reporting and documentation can set the foundation for a smooth transition through the compensation journey.

When you suffer a severe injury at work, you may wonder when is the right time to return to work. If a doctor has cleared you to return, it’s time to start moving forward. If not, it’s important to avoid giving in to pressure to return too soon.

When should you go back to work?

It’s crucial to remember that following a workplace injury, your needs and that of your employer are very different. The company might need you to return to work as soon as possible, but this might not be your best choice for various reasons.

Therefore, if you aren’t mentally or physically prepared to handle the regular demands of your job, you should consider extending your recovery period a while longer. If you resume work unprepared, you risk getting injured again—possibly even worse than last time. Therefore, you should carefully weigh the pros and cons of returning to work before you make this big step.

What to expect when you resume work

Resuming work after a workers’ compensation claim is a significant milestone that requires strategic planning and collaboration. For many injured workers, returning to work involves a rehabilitation process. Physical therapy and rehabilitation programs help individuals regain strength, mobility and functionality, promoting a smoother transition back to the workplace.

Open and transparent communication with employers is crucial during the return-to-work process. Employees should discuss any concerns or modifications needed to accommodate their recovery. This can better ensure you return to a safe workplace to minimize the likelihood of successive injuries.

Advocating for your rights does not end when you qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. You also have to decide when you’re ready to resume work and you may need to ask your employer to make the necessary modifications to make your transition back to the workplace smooth.  If you’re confused about whether or not you should return to work, seeking legal counsel can help you make an informed decision.