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Employment Status While on WC
#1
State is CA.

Just curious, if I am on WC, my employer cannot "fire" me, is that right? Now, even I am on P/S, my employer can't accommodate my work restrictions, does this mean I am no longer their employee? What is the best way to find out my employment status without contacting my employer?

Sorry if this is a dump question Smile

Thanks!
 
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#2
Did you reach out to your employer stating you are P&S'd and would like to begin the interactive process? I recommend doing this in writing. Depended upon how many employees your employer has and your injury, you may fall under state and federal ADA laws. Your employer is obligated to try their best to either accommodate your injury at your last position or offer you a different position that is at least 85% of your previous wages. Did your employer discuss your restrictions and attempt to accommodate you and if they did what reason did they give you for not allowing you to return to work?

Did you receive a letter from your employer stating they could not accommodate you at this time but you are considered on medical leave of absence?

Is your date of injury after 1/1/2013? If it is and your employer did terminate you, you will be eligible for a voucher for college and a cash voucher. One is $5,000. and one is $6,000.

The only way that I know of to find out your employment status is to call the HR department and ask, and if you have an attorney you can ask him if he can send a letter requesting your employment status.

Unfortunately people are fired while on workers compensation all the time. Sometimes the employee has legal recourse and sometimes they do not, and why I asked some of the questions above about # of employees etc. I am not an attorney and no way for me to know if you have a claim for this. If you are terminated you can always call the EEOC and discuss it with a labor law attorney. The only remedy in work comp is filing a 132a if your attorney believes it is warranted. There is a one year SOL for this, so if you find out you were terminated I would ask your WC attorney believes it warrants a 132a. I do not recommend filing one if there is a chance you can return to work because this will piss of your employer.
I am not an attorney.Anything I write should not be considered legal advice.I am writing from my own personal experiences,which is not from any sort of legal background. You should consult with an attorney over legal issues. In California, if you cannot get an attorney you can consult with an I&A officer.
 
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#3
unless you're party to a collective bargaining agreement or union contract you have no more job protection then that offered most employees through the Family and Medical Leave act--12 weeks.
http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/
otherwise the employer is not obligated to hold a job or create one for you.
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information.........
 
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#4
My injury was in 2012, workplace safety related injury. My employer is a top rated supplier (ISO 9000 Certified) for airplane companies and government department of defense. It has over 500 employees.

March 2015, the PQME P/S me with return to work with almost no restrictions. The employer contact my attorney said that they could take me back according to PQME work restrictions report. My attorney sent them a letter stating that, however, according to my PTP's work restrictions, I cannot lift over 5lbs, no overhead work, no forcefully push, pull with my arms, and break 15 minutes every hour work. And ask if my employer can accommodate those restrictions. My employer's quiet ever since.

It seems like I have to discuss this issue with my WC attorney first.

Any thought?

Thank You!
 
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#5
yes. always keep your lawyer involved in any employment decisions during your comp claim.
your permanent disability rating entitles you to a job retraining voucher.
you can use it to help re-enter the labor market at an occupation that's within your work restrictions.
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information.........
 
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#6
(08-27-2015, 04:14 AM)neckpain101 Wrote: My injury was in 2012, workplace safety related injury. My employer is a top rated supplier (ISO 9000 Certified) for airplane companies and government department of defense. It has over 500 employees.

March 2015, the PQME P/S me with return to work with almost no restrictions. The employer contact my attorney said that they could take me back according to PQME work restrictions report. My attorney sent them a letter stating that, however, according to  my PTP's work restrictions, I cannot lift over 5lbs, no overhead work, no forcefully push, pull with my arms, and break 15 minutes every hour work. And ask if my employer can accommodate those restrictions. My employer's quiet ever since.

It seems like I have to discuss this issue with my WC attorney first.

Any thought?

Thank You!

I am going to have to humbly disagree with 1171 about not having an protections above FMLA.

It sounds like you are not terminated, but I would ask your attorney about your employment status.

I am going to step carefully when I am writing this and this is just my own personal opinions on this subject.Your attorney may have different goals than you (unknown) regarding this return to work issue. Can I ask you if you think you are physically able to return to your job with the lower restrictions your QME gave you?
Or you think you need the restrictions your doctor gave you or possible something in between? I think most people know what they can and cannot do physically after having an injury for a number of years. Restrictions can affect your rating and also your ability return to work. It can financially benefit your attorney (and you) to have you with high restrictions and unable to work.On the other hand if you really need those restrictions your attorney was looking out for your best interests. No amount of PD can make up the income lost after an injury.

 I always like to see a person keep their job and stay in he workforce. Going down the road of state disability and then SSDI should be reserved for those who cannot work at all due to their disability and some do get off of  SSDI and return to the work force. It is more difficult the longer you are out.

It sounds like you have not completely engaged in the interactive process fully. Having an attorney can make it more difficult sometimes. I recommend googleing "interactive process" and you will see what it entails. If you truly feel you can return to work in your last position with restrictions or another position in the company there are ways to facilitate that.

Since you were injured in 2012 you are not eligible for the new voucher system or the cash voucher, but you are for the older one that is determined by your PD rating and also a 15% increase of PD due to your employer not allowing you to return to work.
I am not an attorney.Anything I write should not be considered legal advice.I am writing from my own personal experiences,which is not from any sort of legal background. You should consult with an attorney over legal issues. In California, if you cannot get an attorney you can consult with an I&A officer.
 
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#7
Your own PTP said you can't do all those things, and you expect your employer to create a job that fits those restrictions? Good luck.

Not to mention the fact that you would have to disagree with your ptp's report, which is the one doctor that should know your condition the best.

I spent alot of time fighting the claims adjuster, the defense atty. numerous pqme reports, and I filed a wrongful termination, (lost). but I have never disagreed with my own ptp report.

I don't think you have a snow balls chance in hell.

I mean that with no disrespect, just want to drive home the point of you are wasting your time with this, unless you can prove your ptp is wrong?
 
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#8
(08-26-2015, 08:24 PM)neckpain101 Wrote: State is CA.

Just curious, if I am on WC, my employer cannot "fire" me, is that right? Now, even I am on P/S, my employer can't accommodate my work restrictions, does this mean I am no longer their employee? What is the best way to find out my employment status without contacting my employer?

Sorry if this is a dump question Smile

Thanks!

Did your employer ever say in writing that you were laid off or let go? If not then you are still an employee, just an inactive employee. You also should depending on your date of injury (before 2013) be eligible for an increase of 15% on your PPD if your employer cannot return you to work with restrictions.
 
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#9
(08-27-2015, 04:58 PM)dolphins Wrote: Your own PTP said you can't do all those things, and you expect your employer to create a job that fits those restrictions? Good  luck.

Not to mention the fact that you would have to disagree with your ptp's report, which is the one doctor that should know your condition the best.

I spent alot of time fighting the claims adjuster, the defense atty. numerous pqme reports, and I filed a wrongful termination, (lost). but I have never disagreed with my own ptp report.

I don't  think you have a snow balls chance in hell.

I mean that with no disrespect, just want to drive home the point of you are wasting your time with this, unless you can prove your ptp is wrong?

Hi Dolphines I know of some injured workers who did have successful claims of ADA violations and wrongful termination. Not everyone has a claim and a labor law attorney would be the best one to discuss this with. Did you have a civil attorney representing you or was this through WC 132a?

I do not know this persons situation. He may very well need the stricter restrictions (unknown as two doctors are stating opposite) and if so his attorney was doing the right thing here.I have never heard of a PTP not allowing an injured worker to return to work if they really wanted to (unless certain job situations). Restrictions can be changed and are not forever. He can change PTP's at any time as well. I do not think a person is ever stuck in a situation with strict restrictions if they physically feel like they can go above them and RTW then they should convey it to the doctor.The interactive process is supposed to include the doctor if the employer needs more information and is supposed to be a group effort if needed to find a solution to get the employee back to work. It does not always work out that way.

I agree with kev_b that chances are high you are high you are on medical leave, but your attorney should know.

I do want to ask 1171 a hypothetical question. If an injured worker is in the situation above, where QME and PTP differ on RTW restrictions, could the IW use the QME restrictions during the interactive process? I am just curious.
I am not an attorney.Anything I write should not be considered legal advice.I am writing from my own personal experiences,which is not from any sort of legal background. You should consult with an attorney over legal issues. In California, if you cannot get an attorney you can consult with an I&A officer.
 
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#10
I actually went down to the EOEH, and filed the suit myself. This is when I found out California is an "AT WILL STATE" What was explained to me, is, I can quit my job anytime I want, without telling the employer why. Can walk off the job if I want, with no explanation. Same is true for the employer. They can fire you for the length of your hair. For the clothes you wear. For whatever reason they want. Hence the term AT WILL. You have to prove your employment rights were violated. Sexual harassment seems to be the one people seem to win on. And some discrimination cases, but for the most part, you are fighting un uphill battle. Try and get an attorney to take a wrongful termination case.

Remember, I can only tell you what happened to me, and what I found out researching it, and talking with attorney's, while I was fighting the case. Which I lost.

As far as PQME vs PTP, after pqme issues his/her report. your att, or ptp has 15 days to object to said report, after that, you have accepted the report, and will play hell trying to get it changed now.

How do you think I have seen so many pqme's and ame's?

I would love to hear how many 1171 has seen.

CH, you know their are deadlines that must be followed. I'm a little surprised you would defer to 1171, when you know the answer. 15 days, to object. You know this.

Your just as smart as 1171, don't sell yourself short.
 
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