You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means

How taking some time to understand the terminology in your workers compensation case can reduce stress.

A workers compensation case can be extremely stressful. It typically means that your wage loss and medical benefits have been disputed.

Here are some terms you may hear during your workers’ compensation case and what they actually mean.


Many people assume a trial date is when your case will finally be heard in court. Not so fast speedy! It is common for a magistrate to assign multiple trial dates before actually proceeding with testimony. This extra time can help you develop medical and legal issues leading to a better settlement.

“Independent Medical Examination (IME)”

These medical examinations are not truly independent. Insurance companies use the same doctors over and over again because they know what to expect. Many of these doctors make a career out of testifying for insurance companies. Testimony from your doctor can be used to challenge biased medical opinions.


Does a work injury prevent you from doing your job? Great! You are still not disabled under Michigan law. You must also show a limitation of wage earning capacity in other jobs suitable to your qualifications and training. Time to break out the want ads.

“Reasonable Employment”

Employers don’t have to pay lost wages if they give you a job. This is called reasonable employment and it is not limited to jobs within your qualifications and training. Some employers force people to watch empty parking lots or perform other demeaning tasks. Sound reasonable to you?

“Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor”

Vocational rehabilitation counselors are hired by insurance companies and they have an agenda. Reduce or stop the payment of wage loss benefits! You may be told that you can find work in a profession never considered before or told that a job exists when it does not. A good faith job search proves that nobody will hire you.

Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a case. We have represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation.

Related information:

Workers Compensation 101: What is considered a “work accident” in Michigan?

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by greeblie.

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