Following an injury at work, when your treating physician indicates that you can return to work, but only under certain work restrictions, many times your employer will offer light duty work in order to allow your return to work for the employer. Any time this issue comes up in a workers’ compensation case, it is critical that your employer is only offering work within the assigned work restrictions.
If your employer is attempting to require you to perform work outside the assigned work restrictions, there may be the basis for you refusing such work and the employer being required to pay disability checks for any lost time from work.
If there is uncertainty about what type of work you may be required to perform for the employer, there is the ability to request a copy of a job description for the position being offered in order to have your treating physician determine if the work being offered is appropriate given the assigned work restrictions.
If the light duty work being offered within the assigned work restrictions does not offer wages at the same amount you were earning prior to your date of injury or if you are missing work due to appointment with your doctor, there may be a claim for partial disability benefits in order to address this reduction in wages.
These legal issues in workers’ compensation cases can oftentimes be complicated and confusing. For this reason, we always recommend an injured worker speak with a N.C. Board Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialist in order to understand their legal rights and what actions may or need to be taken in order to address any issues to assure the injured worker receives all the benefits she or he is entitled to as a result of the work injury.
Should you have any questions about these issues or any other issues involving your workers’ compensation case, please feel free to contact one of the four N.C. Board Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialists at Cardinal Law Partners for a free consultation.