Michigan workers’ comp lawyer discusses permanent restrictions after knee replacement.
Many of our clients have been doing heavy labor for their entire careers. Knee injuries can be devastating if they prevent an individual from standing or walking for any length of time. These activities are necessary to perform essential job duties. This is especially true when a person ends up with permanent restrictions after knee replacement. The transition to a sedentary or light job can be extremely difficult.
We encourage our clients who are given work limitations to start thinking about their future. Many of our clients return to gainful employment with a little help. Here is some information about light duty, vocational rehabilitation, and settlement. Please remember that every situation is different, so it is best to speak with an experienced workers’ comp lawyer.
Light duty work
Employees who have knee replacement surgery are usually on crutches for three to six weeks. Our experience shows that most are considered totally disabled and paid lost wages. Even after resuming most daily activities, it is not uncommon to have permanent work restrictions.
Employers are given a big incentive to bring people with permeant work restrictions after knee replacement back to work. Finding them a new position within the company ends responsibility for payment of lost wages. This is called light duty or reasonable employment.
Reasonable employment is defined as work within an employee’s capacity to perform that poses no clear and proximate threat to health and safety. It is not limited to jobs within qualifications and training, so anything goes. The job must be a reasonable distance from the employee’s home.
Failure to accept reasonable employment can result in a forfeiture of wages. Watch out for employers who violate permanent restrictions after knee replacement in Michigan. We have represented many people who have a dispute with their employer about what constitutes light duty.
Vocational rehabilitation is available when an employee must be retrained for a new job. It is possible to get money for education and retraining. This is a good option for an employee who has permanent restrictions after knee replacement in Michigan and cannot find a job.
Vocational rehabilitation is supposed to be about helping a person get back to gainful employment. Watch out for vocational counselors who do not have best interests at heart. They are hired by insurance companies to get people into any job regardless of whether it is a good fit.
Insurance companies also use “phantom wages” to cut the weekly comp rate. This is biased upon a transferable skills analysis and labor market survey. These are not always fair assessments and should be challenged.
Settlements for injured employees with permanent restrictions after knee replacement
Many of our clients want to trade workers’ comp benefits for a lump sum cash payment. This allows them to get out from underneath the insurance company and move on with their lives.
Our Michigan clients with permanent restrictions after knee replacement can do their own job search. They can also use settlement money to get additional medical treatment without interference. Some of our clients use settlement money to pay off debt, start a business, or retire.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (844) 316-8033 for a free consultation today.