Workers’ compensation could apply after returning to work

California workers are protected by the state’s workers’ compensation law, which requires all job providers to provide insurance protection. The idea is to help workers make ends meet while recovering from workplace injuries or other ailments acquired while on the job. When a worker is disabled even temporarily, worker’s compensation insurance provides about two-thirds of the average weekly earnings and covers medical costs. The state-mandated coverage helps injured employees have a job to which they can return while ensuring that their employers have trained and experienced workers who can return after healing up. It also protects employers against lawsuits when workers accept the coverage in lieu of filing claims for damages. However, the jobs awaiting injured workers sometimes are not the same ones they left when injured and pay less upon their return. Workers’ comp can make up the difference.

Wage reductions and job training are covered

When an injured employee returns to work, he or she is not always physically capable of resuming the old job. Reduced duties and correspondingly reduced pay might be the short-term solution. When that is the case, worker’s compensation helps to make up the difference in wages between the current job and the old one the worker had when injured. The worker also could qualify for job training and collect a vocational rehabilitation benefit while learning a new trade to replace the income from the old job.

Worker returns could go awry

Losing the ability to continue working in a former capacity could lead to conflicts between the employer and the worker or the workers’ comp insurer and the worker. If so, an attorney who is experienced in workers’ comp claims in the Van Nuys area may review the situation and help the worker to better understand his or her rights under California law. The attorney may also help their client understand how workers’ compensation coverage might apply in a particular situation. If a legal dispute arises, the attorney may help to argue the case and obtain the best possible outcome.