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Cal. Worker Comp can they lay me off?
Hi everybody,

I injured my right shoulder at work in November of 2007. I was on modified duty until the middle of May 2008 when I had surgery.

I have been out of work since the middle of May per doctor's order. I think I will be going back to work soon.

Anyway, I've heard to the great vine that there is going to be employee reduction.

My question is: what is my status? When the doctor sends me back to work I must be on some kind of modified duty for a while. How long will my case stay open? And if they have a reduction of force, can I be included in on that?

I am in Southern California and my family medical leave act has run out. Overall, my employer has treated me well so far. I just don't know what to expect from here.

Any hints or help will be appreciated. What can I expect to happen down the road? I've never been to this before. Is it better to stay out while the employee reduction is going on or come back a little early?


I'm sorry you are having such a rough time of it. Do you know if the company takes back people after a layoff when things get better for the company? I don't know how it is these days, but my father went through several layoffs with JPL in California because productions tailed off, but he was always recalled later.

Personally I would ask your Dr. when he thinks you will be fit for work, and then contact your employer and find out what the situation is there. It may be ok, but you won't know until you ask. I would think that if there is no work, then they don't have to keep you on, workmans comp or no. I hope that isn't the case. Best of luck, someone on here might have better information.
you can claim benefits as long as you need them
yes you can be terminated. FMLA will protect your job for upto 12 weeks while you are off work but does not prevent a termination/layoff/plant closure.
If the employer is no longer able to provide modified work, TTD will be restarted until you are determined to be Permanent & Stationary.
If you have permanent disability there are some retraining vouchers available
to find more about work comp in california read the factsheets
Yes, you can be laid off. I also live in So. California. I have carpal tunnel. I did not want to go out on workers comp (WC), but the doctor ordered I take a month off. Six months have passed and I am still on WC, having had surgery on the one hand and waiting for surgery on the other hand. I though my job of 17 years was stable. I specialized in the area of work I was in. My company had me take FMLA. Once that expired, I was laid off. If your company is reducing the staff, yes, they can lay you off and may do so. If you do get laid off, you are still able to collect WC. I asked my supervisor in the beginning and throughout the first four months I have been off work, if there was any chance I could lose my job, and I was told "of course not". Well, that is not the case. Once the WC is over with and your doctor has released you, you should be able to collect unemployment.

Good luck.
I would suggest you talk to your employer, rather than get your info thru the office gossip mill.

It is most common for an employer to eliminate your job and call it staff reduction. It gets them off the hook easier.

You can continue to receive WC TTD benefits if you are fired, but only up to 104 weeks from the first date you collected TTD, then it stops.

You may qualify for a voucher for rehabilitation during this time. See the link that 1171 provided you.

Once you are released P&S (Permanent and Stationary) from the doctor, you can collect Unemployment, or find another job. If you have any permanent disability, your I/C will immediately begin to send bi-weekly payments (much smaller than TTD) from an estimated rating. Your rating will be reviewed by the DEU (Disablility Evaluation Unit) and then finalized. Then you will be offered a "settlement" based on the DEU's final rating; which may or may not include future medical.

Read up on the laws in Califonia, as the best defense is educating yourself about WC.

Good luck to you.
Let Go, and Let God......

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