Will Returning to Work Affect My Workers' Compensation Benefits

Injured employees who return to work as soon as medically possible often have the most favorable outcomes. They recover from their injuries quicker and experience less wage loss.

Workers’ compensation benefits may continue as long as an employee is unable to work and earn money. Even when you return to work on light duty while treating for a work injury, you can still receive worker’s comp benefits for medical treatment for your work-related injury. If the light-duty position pays less than what you were earning before your accident, you can often obtain a portion of the difference of your wages.

The following are several factors to consider when deciding if you should return to work after an on-the-job injury:

  • Availability of previous work or modified work – Before choosing to either continue working for the company or leave with a lump sum settlement, you should first know whether there is a position available with the company. If there is and you can perform it, then the option of taking their prior position should be back on the table. If permanent impairment restricts you from being placed in their old job, however, you should ask whether there is modified work or an alternate position available. If there is, then the option is available and you can still receive modified workers’ comp benefits. If there is not, then consider accepting a lump sum settlement.
  • Relationship with employer – Even if returning to work is an option, the relationship with your employer could have been tainted through the claims process, especially since the employer's insurance premiums have increased due to your claim. If you anticipate experiencing remorse or discrimination upon your return, you may want to settle your case and move on from the company.
  • Availability of other work – You have the option of taking a lump sum settlement and receiving income somewhere else in the form of another job.

Whether you wish to return to work or consider taking what the insurance adjuster offers you, it is imperative to consult with a lawyer. With more than 30 years of experience, our Orange Country workers’ compensation lawyer at Alvandi Law Group, P.C. has a thorough understanding of California workers’ comp law to help you obtain the best results possible for your case.

For more information, contact us and request a free consultation today.

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