Workers’ Compensation Agency (WCA) releases updated professional disclosure form for vocational rehabilitation counselors.
We have blogged about vocational rehabilitation on several occasions. It is supposed to help a disabled worker transition to a new job. Up to 52 weeks of vocational services can be requested. A second 52-week period is available should it become necessary. Many of our clients have used vocational rehabilitation for retraining or tuition reimbursement.
The WCA has now released an updated Vocational Rehabilitation Provider Professional Disclosure Statement. Form WC-500 is meant to “assist with establishing trust, enhancing transparent communication, and building rapport at the start of the counseling relationship.” Counselors are reminded to use Form WC-500 at the outset of each vocational rehabilitation case.
Our experience shows that insurance companies sometimes use vocational rehabilitation as a form of harassment. A vocational counselor can make a situation worse by ignoring work restrictions or suggesting dead-end jobs. It is important to have a lawyer on your side at this stage. This will ensure legal rights are protected.
Insurance companies also hire vocational counselors to write Stokes reports. A transferable skills analysis and labor market survey will be completed. Post-injury wage earning capacity (PIWEC) can then be used to reduce or stop payment of lost wages. These are rarely fair assessments and must be challenged.
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) 201-9497 for a free consultation today.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by COD Newsroom.