From the time you sustain a workplace injury, and your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer accepts your claim and starts paying weekly, partial wage loss payments while you are out of work recovering from your injury, they are looking for the first opportunity to terminate your benefits. The following are a few of the most common ways in which an injured worker will lose their workers’ compensation benefits:
- Doctor’s release
Your employer’s insurer will at some point require that you attend an independent medical examination (IME) where their doctor will examine you and determine that you have reached maximum medical improvement and they will declare that you are fit to return to work with or without restrictions on the kinds of tasks you can perform.
- Ignoring your doctor’s recommendations
If you ignore the doctor’s recommendations and your condition does not improve or worsens because of it, you could lose your benefits.
- Your employer creates a new job
Your employer could create a new position which might include you coming in to work, sitting in an office and answering a phone or doing nothing all day long. If you refuse this position out of frustration you could lose your benefits.
- Your employer creates a fake, “light duty” position
If your recovery from your injury is taking a long time, your employer might create what they describe as a, “light duty” job, but it violates the restrictions of your doctor. If you refuse to do the work, you could lose your benefits.
- You accept a settlement
It is vital that you understand that once you accept a settlement, your workers’ compensation benefits will be completed. You would be wise to consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney before you try to settle your case because you could be missing additional benefits such as job placement, vocational rehabilitation and other benefits that could be helpful to you.
- Oversharing on social media
You tell the doctor that you are unable to stand or walk without excruciating pain, yet you post pictures of yourself in heels at your cousin’s wedding.
- Lying about your injury
If you really sustained the injury working on a project at home, but you tell your employer you got hurt at work, they will discover the truth and you will have just committed fraud.
- Surveillance by a private investigator
Your employer’s insurer hired a private investigator to follow you and they snapped pictures of you walking around easily in heels at your cousin’s wedding on your alleged injured ankle. Busted.
- Return to work
The best way to lose your Pennsylvania workers’ compensation benefits is to recover from your injury or illness and go back to work.
If you are a Pennsylvania worker, and you feel as if your workers’ compensation benefits were denied before you were able to make a complete recovery, or if you are dealing with any other type of disagreement with your employer’s insurer, you might benefit from a consultation with an experienced Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney.
At Larry Pitt & Associates, our Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorneys know that things are tough for undocumented workers – especially when they are hurt on the job. To learn more about how the laws might affect you, please call 888.PITT.LAW or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. We proudly serve clients in Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties.