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Can I Get a New Job While on Workers Comp?
Workers comp gives you peace of mind when you’re healing after a work accident. But your wage-replacement benefits won’t cover your whole pre-injury income, so you may be wondering whether you can get a new job while on workers comp.
While this may seem like a great way to make up the income your wage replacement doesn’t cover, you should speak to a lawyer from Pothitakis Law Firm, PC before you apply. Your Iowa workers comp benefits could be affected by taking a new position. An attorney can discuss your options with you so you can support your family without risking your income.
Working Can End Your Benefits
Unfortunately, taking a new job while you’re on workers compensation could mean losing your benefits. Workers comp is there to provide benefits when you’re unable to work your original position, and if you’re working elsewhere, that may signal to the work comp insurer that your injury no longer prevents you from working.
Partial Disability May Be Your Solution
If you’re able to work, but your former position is impossible because of your injuries, you do have other options. Partial disability benefits can give you the chance to work a lower-paying job while you’re injured and make up some of the difference between your previous salary and your new one. You can return to work that will cause less strain and exhaustion so you can focus on healing.
You may also try other programs that will assist you in getting back to work. Vocational rehabilitation can help train you for new types of employment that will better accommodate your injuries, for instance.
How Will My Benefits Change?
While partial disability benefits won’t provide as much compensation as your total disability benefits, you can receive two-thirds of the difference between your original wage and your new wage.
For example, let’s say you were originally making $1,000 a week, and in your new position, you’re making $800 per week. The difference between the two is $200, so you’ll receive two-thirds of that in addition to your new wage. That adds a little over $130 to your weekly pay.
To make this change, you may need to appeal your case or schedule a meeting with the insurer. A lawyer can gather evidence that you’ll be able to return to a lesser-paying position and fight for your opportunity to do so.
Learn Your Workers Comp Options
When you’re unable to work, it may feel like your only option is to take your time off and hope you’re better soon. It can be frustrating, but you may have the option to get back to work and a semi-normal life.
While you can’t get a new job while on workers comp, that doesn’t mean you can’t work at all. Making changes to your workers compensation benefits may be confusing, but you won’t have to do it alone. If you’re temporarily or permanently impaired but believe you could return to work in a limited capacity, contact a lawyer at Pothitakis Law Firm, PC for help navigating this process.
For more information, schedule a free consultation with us. We can be reached at 1-866-PLF-IOWA (753-4692) or through our online contact form below.