In some states, permanent work restrictions worker’s comp gets treated as a big deal. In simple terms, it means the inability of an injured worker to fully recover from an injury sustained at work, therefore hinting at the possibility of living with limitations and pain for a lifetime. If an injured worker faces permanent restrictions, he will make changes to his worker’s comp case. Some of the changes include;
- Impairment rating evaluation
- Independent medical evaluation
- Vocational evaluation
- Light duty job offer
An injured worker faced with permanent work restrictions means obeying the doctor’s instructions on not returning to regular work forever. A doctor would only say this when he thinks that an injured worker would not recover totally from an injury; in other cases, the individual might be taken off work totally and not temporarily. In some cases, the injured person might return to work because there would be limitations to his job duties.
We refer to this situation as a light-duty restriction, and if a worker has light-duty restrictions, his employer will assign duties that would fit his condition.
Permanent Work Restrictions Worker’s Comp
Some injuries sustained at work would improve as time goes on, and permanent restrictions are not common because injured workers tend to return to living their everyday lives at some point. There is truth in this despite a worker disagreeing with his employer about when to fully recover. On the other hand, a doctor would issue a permanent work restriction if an injured worker fails to return to normal. When this eventually happens, it means that the doctor has acknowledged that the injured worker has gotten to a point known as the “maximum medical improvement.”
The maximum medical improvement point means that a person’s injury would have no substantial improvement even in the future; it doesn’t matter if the injured person gets different medical treatment. It means an injured person has recovered as much as possible in more explicit terms, but he would have to live with limitations and pains for the rest of his life. If you are an injured worker and have gotten to the maximum medical improvement point, you would be wondering the next step to take.
A lot can happen to your worker’s comp case once you hit the maximum medical improvement level. If the worker’s comp insurance company does nothing, you will receive medical benefits and wages lost for the rest of your life. Well, this doesn’t commonly happen; instead, the worker’s comp insurance company devices some tools that would affect your benefits negatively. Hiring an attorney at this point is very necessary if you haven’t done so already.
Hiring an attorney once you receive permanent work restrictions worker’s comp is a wise step to take because you can see that permanent restrictions can affect your worker’s comp benefits negatively. The worker’s comp insurance would not offer to keep paying your benefits if you do not give them a fight. Once an injured worker gets faced with permanent work restrictions, worker’s comp allows worker’s comp insurance the opportunity to put an end to or limit a worker’s benefits.
You would need an attorney who is experienced and would fight and protect your rights and interest. Being placed under permanent work restriction might feel like your career has ended, which isn’t reality. Furthermore, it would be best to be careful about not going against your doctor’s permanent work restrictions without getting an official clearance from the doctor to do so. If a worker goes against a doctor’s work restrictions orders, he will likely get into trouble with his employer.
Light Duty Job Offer
Your employer might decide to offer you light-duty work if you have permanent restrictions. The employer would look at the doctors’ limits and determine what job to give to you. There are sophisticated light-duty jobs in some companies that make it easy for an injured person under permanent restrictions to work. In other cases, an employer might need to make modifications to meet the doctors’ permanent restrictions.
Employers willingly offer light-duty jobs because it reduces the worker’s comp wage loss benefits you would get paid. Unfortunately, placing a worker on a light-duty job also cuts down the worker’s future worker’s comp settlement value.