What Are the Rules About Working When I'm on Workers Compensation in DC?

We always advise people to be careful about working while you are on workers compensation. You may be able to get some partial benefits if you go back to work at a lesser role or less pay. Or, if you are on light duty at the same position.

But, if you are totally disabled and collecting workers compensation  (usually called temporary total disability or TTD), you cannot work at a different job and get paid for that. Anyone working and concealing it from the insurance company is committing fraud - remember, the system exists to pay legitimate injured workers, not people who claim they can't work when they are working. And if you do decide to commit fraud you will be found out because the insurance company will most likely put surveillance on you if they suspect something. It's never pays to commit fraud against the workers compensation carrier.

If you can work light duty work or in some reduced capacity, you should.  You will still get workman's comp benefits but these will be based on partial disability, and the calculation goes like this:  If your normal weekly paycheck (weekly wage) was $1,000.00 and your light duty wages are $700, you would get $200 in temporary partial disability benefits ($1000 - $700 = $300 x 2/3 = $200). Many times, the light duty wages will vary so these benefits have to be adjusted every week.  Our staff collects the data, calculates the benefits and follows up with the insurance company to make sure you get all of the benefits you should.

Most people who have been seriously injured at work are very anxious to get back to work, but don't go back before your doctor releases you to go back. Going back on light duty or at a different role is one way to make sure you are healthy before returning to heavy duty. We have found that our clients who have been able to do light duty or a modified role will continued to get paid by the insurance company to help make up the difference in their earning power, and often times they get to maintain that positive relationship with their employer that many workers worry about when they are not working.

Are You Unsure About What to Do Next After a Serious Injury? Get the Help You Need Now

If you were seriously injured at work, especially if you need surgery, you probably need an attorney to help you take care of your family and protect yourself from the insurance company. Give us a call today at 203-393-3320 and we will get your started on your road to success in workman's comp.

Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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Experienced DC Workers' Comp, Long Term Disability & Accident Lawyer