Your doctor may determine that even though you cannot do all your normal work duties, you have recovered enough to do some work. In this case, he or she may say that you can return to work, but with restrictions.
Here are some factors to consider about working with restrictions, according to the State of California Department of Industrial Relations.
You need clear definitions of your limitations so that you do not accidentally make your injury worse when you start working again. The workers’ compensation claims administrator and your supervisor also need to know these restrictions.
If your employer cannot offer you work that meets the requirements of your restrictions, it cannot require you to come back to work. You should not attempt to do work that the doctor has not cleared you to do, no matter how much you want to get back to your pre-injury life.
Modifications and alternative work
In seeking to offer you work that meets the restrictions, your employer may modify your current job. Or, if your injury prevents you from effectively doing your job at all, your employer may set you up with a different job entirely.
Requirements for work with restrictions
Whatever job opportunity your employer offers, it must meet the following qualifications:
- Last at least 12 months
- Pay at least 85% of your wages and benefits at the time that your injury occurred
- Located within reasonable distance of the residence where you lived when the injury occurred
If the job does not meet all the requirements, the insurance company and your employer cannot stop your workers’ compensation benefits for turning it down.