It can be a very frustrating experience to take mandatory time off of work because of an injury or a work-acquired medical condition. By the time they have started to recover, many injured workers are eager to get back to the job.
It can be quite boring to be stuck at home all day with nothing to do, and workers’ compensation benefits typically do not fully replace your lost wages during your time off of work. Going back to work as soon as possible will benefit you by increasing your income and benefit your employer by minimizing the cost of the claim against their policy.
However, even if you are well enough to go back to work, you may not be able to do everything you did before your diagnosis or injury. Can you request light duty work as part of your return to work process for a workers’ compensation claim in Florida?
The doctor can recommend light duty
A doctor’s recommendations can play a major role in helping workers transition back to full-time employment after a medical leave of absence. Limitations on how long they perform one task or the overall weight that they can lift will help their employer get them back on the job without worsening their injury or undermining their treatment.
Provided your doctor gives instructions in writing regarding your current functional limitations, your employer should do their best to accommodate you.
What if light duty work is too much?
Sometimes people don’t realize until they go back to work that their symptoms are not yet manageable enough for them to do their job again. If you experience a symptom flare-up or are unable to perform your job responsibilities after you start transitioning back to work, you will need to notify your employer and the doctor overseeing your care about the issue as soon as possible.
Open and honest communication about the severity of your symptoms and the current light-duty expectations at your job can help you, your employer and your physician find a solution that will work for everyone. Knowing your basic rights as someone receiving workers’ compensation benefits in Florida will help you make the most of the coverage available to you.