Do You Have to Accept a Light Duty Position?

light duty position

After you’ve been out of work for a while, your employer is going to be eager to have you return to work. While you are out collecting workers’ comp benefits, your employer is paying someone else to do your job. They don’t want to do this any longer than necessary. At the same time, your Charlotte workers comp lawyer is not going to let you go back until you’re ready. The problem is that, if you refuse a light duty position, your employer could terminate your workers’ comp benefits. They may even fire you. Rather than risk this happening, it’s a good idea to have a Charlotte injury lawyer there to negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf.

These situations can be frustrating. Not only are you dealing with your workers’ comp claim, but you’re also dealing with your injuries. Once your workers comp doctor determines that you have reached maximum level improvement, there isn’t much you can do. At that point, you will be ordered to go back to work. Your Charlotte workers comp lawyer can get a second opinion. But there’s only so much time you can buy.

If you’re out on workers comp and your employer is pressuring you to come back to work, you need help. You shouldn’t have to deal with this on top of everything else. Call our office so you can schedule your free, initial consultation. This gives you a chance to sit down with a licensed Charlotte injury lawyer. They’ll let you know what your options are. They can also reach out to your employer and their insurance carrier and find out how they can come to a fair resolution.

Your Workers Compensation Benefits Will Eventually Expire

North Carolina is one of the most generous states when it comes to workers compensation. Most states give you a couple of years to collect workers’ compensation. In North Carolina, you can technically collect benefits forever. The time limit is 500 weeks which comes out to be a little over nine years. Of course, very few of our clients are ever out of work for that long. Most people are back to work within a matter of weeks or months.

However, there are times when your injuries are so serious that you cannot return to work for quite some time. Even if they want you to come in for a light duty position, you don’t think you can do it. It all depends on your injuries and what your workers’ comp doctor says. If they adamantly refuse to extend your time at home, your Charlotte workers comp lawyer can file an appeal. The problem is that this can take some time. In the interim, you will not continue to receive benefits. This means you may go without income for quite some time.

light duty position

Most Workers Are Back to Work Within a Few Months

For most of our clients, their injuries are rather minor. They are back to work within weeks or months. However, there are times when people suffer life-changing injuries. For example, if you suffer a traumatic brain injury in a construction accident, you may not be able to work ever again. The same is true if you suffer a neck or spinal cord injury. Depending on the circumstances, you may need more time to heal. Our goal is to make sure our clients aren’t forced back to work before they’re ready. The last thing you want to do is aggravate your injuries. This could sideline you even longer.

If You Refuse the Light Duty Position, Your Benefits Could Be Terminated

You want to be really careful about refusing a light duty position. If your employer creates a position specifically for you, they expect you to accept it. From your employer’s point of view, they are paying another person while you’re out recovering from your injuries. At some point, they are going to contact your Charlotte workers comp lawyer and tell them you need to come back to work. If you truly aren’t ready, your attorney can always file an appeal with the North Carolina Industrial Commission. They can review the claim and determine if they feel you’re ready to return to work.

The good news is that, once you return to a light duty position, it’s only a matter of time before you’re back to work full time. Some people assume that being out on workers compensation is like being on a paid vacation. This is not the case. Most of our clients can’t wait to get back to work after sitting at home for weeks or months at a time.

You Should Consider Meeting with an Experienced Charlotte Injury Lawyer Right Away

If you were hurt at work and your employer is trying to force you to come back to work early, contact our office. If your company has asked you to come back to work, either to your original position or a light duty position, you have options. If you don’t feel ready to return, even to light duty, you need to let your Charlotte injury lawyer immediately. They can reach out to your employer or their insurance carrier and request an extension. You will need to get a second opinion in order to make this happen. This is something your Charlotte workers comp lawyer can handle for you.

Since things can move quickly once you’re called back to work, you don’t want to waste any time. Call our office and schedule your free, initial consultation. Sit down with a seasoned Charlotte worker comp lawyer who can review your claim and find out what your best options are. If you are clearly not fully recovered from your injuries, you can always get a second opinion. If your employer still won’t allow you to take some more time before returning to work, your Charlotte injury lawyer may need to file a motion.

Since we do offer a free, initial consultation, it’s worth your while to meet with one of our associates. Just call our office or you can schedule your consultation through our website.