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February 13, 2019

Returning to Work After Using Workers’ Compensation Benefits

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Posted in Wisconsin Workers Compensation Related News

Workers Comp Milwaukee, WI

Employees who were hurt on the job must get back to work as soon as they are medically permitted to do so. The medical provider can outline the worker’s physical restrictions upon returning to work, if any are required. These limitations are set in place until the treating doctor has decided that the employee no longer needs the modifications. Returning to work after receiving workers compensation benefits can be a difficult transition, particularly for those who are still managing some symptoms related to the injury or feel they aren’t being treated fairly by their employer.

It is important that an employee understands his or her rights when it comes to returning back to work, and knows how to respond if their employer retaliates against them for using workers’ compensation benefits.

Q: What happens if I miss days due to the injury?

A: An employee who has to miss several days or longer due to the workplace injury, can notify their employer by providing medical documentation along with an estimate for when they plan to return. The employer must welcome the employee when he or she comes back without any repercussions. It is recommended that employees continue having consistent communication during this time, to maintain a positive working relationship.

Q: How do I know whether I am being retaliated against by my employer?

A: Upon returning to work after being cleared from workers’ compensation coverage, an employer may retaliate by firing that employee. The employer may try to say that the reason for letting the worker go has nothing to do with having used benefits, but this may not be true after all. In fact, some employers may try to push an employee to quit, by inflicting unwarranted disciplinary actions or creating a hostile working environment.

Q: Is there anyone to help protect me as I transition back into work?

A: Yes, your employer may have an institution risk management team, that includes a safety officer, human resources, supervisor, and risk manager. Keep in mind that while these people have roles pertaining to employee protections, they are still employed by your company. You may want to find a reliable lawyer near you, to oversee your transition experience back into work. An attorney has your best of interest in mind, and can let you know if something your company has done violated your rights or is considered retaliation.

Q: What if something isn’t right about coming back to work, what can I do?

A: There may be instances where the employer and employee dynamic has become hostile, where the company has actually broken a state or federal law. As stated above, the company may try to rid the organization of employees who have been injured on the job, due to receiving a substantial amount of money in benefits coverage. A worker who is concerned something fishy is going on in their workplace after having returned, should consult with a lawyer experienced in workers comp Milwaukee, WI before the matter escalates.

Contact Hickey & Turim, SC for their insight into workers compensation and returning to work after an injury.

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