Violations of Light Duty
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While recovering from a work injury that temporarily disables or impairs you from performing duties at work, your treating medical providers might certify you to return to work in a limited capacity, such as imposing restrictions on physical labor or activities you can do or limiting the number of hours you should work in a day or a week.
Although limiting movement should prevent aggravation of work injuries and recovery setbacks, your employer might pressure you to perform extra duties or return to full-time work. If your employer interferes with light-duty restrictions imposed by your doctor, you need an experienced Indiana workers’ compensation attorney to protect your rights.
At our firm, we believe employers should not pressure injured workers into doing more work than their injuries allow. Our firm has decades of experience advocating for workers across Indiana. Our goal is to get you the worker’s compensation benefits you need and deserve.
If you believe your employer violated your light-duty restrictions while recovering from a work-related injury or illness, turn to Klezmer Maudlin, PC, for help. Reach out to our firm for a free initial case evaluation to review your legal options with a knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorney today.
Why Choose Klezmer Maudlin PC for Help if Your Employer Tries To Violate Your Light Duty Restrictions?
Your employer might want you to return to work as soon as possible. They might be anxious to get production going again or might try to save money on workers’ compensation benefits. When recovering, you might be able to perform some limited work, depending on the circumstances. In some instances, your employer might offer you a light-duty role that complies with your medical limitations or restrictions.
However, your employer might try to push you toward full duty more quickly than your injury would safely allow. If this happens, you need knowledgeable, aggressive legal representation who will fight to protect your rights and interests. Find out why so many Injured workers turn to the workers’ compensation attorneys of Klezmer Maudlin, PC, for help when their employers violate light-duty restrictions.
Some of the reasons our firm stands out include:
- Our firm’s legal team brings a combined century-plus of legal experience to every case we handle.
- We represent clients throughout the state of Indiana from our offices in Indianapolis, Jeffersonville, Lafayette, and Evansville/New Harmony. We are also licensed in Kentucky and serve clients in the greater Louisville area.
- Our attorneys wrote the book on workers’ compensation law in Indiana, having authored the Indiana Workers’ Compensation Practice Manual. This book serves as a critical resource for legal practitioners in Indiana to help them navigate the workers’ compensation system. Our peers recognize us for our knowledge and experience in workers’ compensation law, and our attorneys routinely speak at seminars about workers’ comp law and pursuing workers’ compensation claims.
- Clients do not pay us any money upfront to hire our firm for their workers’ compensation cases. We get paid only if we secure financial compensation for clients through a workers’ comp settlement or by winning a judgment or award from the Workers’ Compensation Board. If we cannot recover compensation, clients owe us nothing.
What Rights and Benefits Does the Indiana Workers’ Compensation System Owe You?
You could seek benefits through the workers’ compensation system for an on-the-job injury or work-related illness. You have the right to receive all reasonable and necessary medical treatment for your work injury at no cost. If you cannot work during your recovery period, you could also get partial replacement of your lost wages or income.
Suppose you can perform limited-duty work and your employer offers a light-duty or part-time position while you’re recovering. In that case, you could also collect partial reimbursement of the difference between your pre-injury average weekly wage and the lower income you earn while working in a part-time or light-duty position.
In addition, if a doctor diagnoses you with a permanent disability or impairment after reaching maximum medical improvement of your work injury, you could seek financial payments based on the type and severity of your impairment. Workers’ compensation can also provide vocational rehabilitation services to train you to work in a different job within your medical limitations if you cannot return to your pre-injury position.
Workers’ Compensation Claims in Indiana
According to the Indiana Department of Labor’s Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses, the state had a non-fatal injury/illness rate of 3.1 per 100 full-time workers for an estimated 73,800 employees who suffered non-fatal injuries and illnesses. In addition, 0.8 non-fatal injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time workers led to one or more days with a job transfer or restriction.
If you need to file a formal claim with the Indiana Workers’ Compensation Board to seek judicial relief from violations of your light-duty restrictions, §22-3-3-3 of the Indiana Code requires you to file your claim within two years. Failure to file your claim within this time could mean waiving your legal rights under the workers’ compensation system. For this reason, if you believe your employer has violated your light-duty restrictions, you should immediately contact a workers’ compensation attorney from Klezmer Maudlin, PC, to discuss your situation and your rights.
Types of Work Accidents and Injuries Klezmer Maudlin PC Can Help You Recover From
The workers’ compensation lawyers at Klezmer Maudlin, PC represent workers injured in on-the-job accidents such as:
- Construction accidents
- Forklift accident
- Warehouse accidents
- Service industry accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Third-party negligence accidents
Our firm will fight to ensure you can safely make a full recovery on light duty after suffering work injuries like:
- Broken bones
- Ligament, tendon, and muscle injuries
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Overexertion injuries
- Herniated disc injuries
- Electrocution injury
- Lacerations, abrasions, or avulsions/degloving injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Traumatic brain injury
- Hearing or vision loss
- Internal organ injuries
- Crush injuries
Do Not Let Your Employer or the Insurance Company Push You Back To Full Duty While You Are Still Recovering From a Work-related Injury or Illness
Employers and workers’ compensation insurers may want to push you back into full duty as soon as possible. This can allow your employer and insurer to reduce and terminate your workers’ compensation benefits and reduce the costs of your injuries.
Unfortunately, because your employer and the insurer have the right to select your healthcare provider to treat your work injury, your doctor might clear you to return to more strenuous duties before you’ve recovered from your work injury.
Let a workers’ compensation attorney from Klezmer Maudlin, PC fight for your rights when your employer or its insurer violates your light-duty limitations and restrictions by:
- Handling all communications with the insurance company on your behalf to look out for your interests, protecting you from tactics that adjusters may use to have a reason to push you back to full duty, such as by asking you for a statement or contacting you to ask how you are “doing.”
- Arranging for independent medical examinations to document your ongoing limitations if treating providers try to certify you to take on heavier duties or return to full-time work.
- Notifying the insurance company if your employer pressures you to perform job tasks beyond the medical limitations set by your employer.
- Filing claims with the state Workers’ Compensation Board if your employer tries to force you to return to full duty before you have made a complete recovery from your work injury.
What To Do if You Have Suffered a Work Injury or Occupational Illness
If you have sustained an injury at work, steps you can take to protect your rights if you need to go on light duty during your recovery include:
- Report your injury to your employer as soon as possible so that you can begin receiving workers’ compensation benefits, including medical treatment
- Follow your doctor’s treatment plan and instructions; do not put off appointments or ignore recommendations to help with your recovery
- Keep copies of your medical records, along with copies of bills, invoices, and receipts for any unreimbursed expenses you incur due to your injuries
- Provide your employer with a written copy of your medical restrictions and suggested accommodations if you return to work
- If someone asks you to perform job tasks that exceed your medical restrictions, notify your supervisor, their supervisor, or your employer’s human resources department
Finally, consult with a workers’ compensation lawyer at Klezmer Maudlin, PC, to learn more about your legal rights and to get help if you experience violations of your light-duty restrictions.
Frequently Asked Questions About Light Duty Under the Workers’ Compensation System
Common questions about light duty and the workers’ compensation system that our clients have include:
Am I required to accept a light-duty role?
In Indiana, a physician chosen by an employer or its workers’ compensation can treat an employee for a work injury and may prescribe medical limitations on the employee’s ability to work. An employer who has available light-duty work that meets the employee’s medical limitations may require that employee to accept a light-duty role until they recover from their work injury. You could jeopardize your workers’ compensation benefits if you refuse a light-duty assignment within your medical restrictions.
What should I do if my employer violates my medical restrictions?
If someone asks you to complete job tasks that exceed your medical restrictions, we recommend that you first notify your supervisor, your supervisor’s supervisor, or your human resources representative. You should also contact a workers’ compensation lawyer with Klezmer Maudlin, PC.
Our firm can contact your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer, since they likely don’t want you to aggravate your injury and suffer a setback that could lead to additional medical expenses. If necessary, our firm can file a claim on your behalf with the Indiana Workers’ Compensation Board.
Can I take time off work to go to medical appointments or undergo medical procedures?
If you need to miss time from work to attend medical appointments or undergo medical procedures, Indiana Code §22-3-3-4 requires your employer to compensate you for your lost wages from missed work. In addition, you could seek reimbursement for reasonable expenses if you need to travel outside the county of your employment for treatment requested or required by your employer or insurer.
Do I need a lawyer to file a claim if my employer violates my light-duty restrictions?
Suppose you must file a claim with the state Workers’ Compensation Board to contest the violation of your light-duty restrictions. In that case, a workers’ compensation attorney from Klezmer Maudlin, PC, could give you the best chance at getting the relief you deserve. Although you are not required to have legal counsel to pursue a claim before the board, your employer and its insurer will have legal representation, so hiring a workers’ compensation attorney from our firm could level the playing field.
Contact Klezmer Maudlin PC To Learn More About Your Rights and Obligations During Your Recovery From a Work Injury
Do not let your employer force you back to full duty before you’ve recovered from a workplace injury or illness. Contact Klezmer Maudlin, PC, today for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn more about how a workers’ compensation lawyer could protect your rights and interests. Call us at (317) 569-9644 or fill out the contact form on our website.