How Will Vocational Rehabilitation Affect Your Workers' Comp Claim?
Vocational rehabilitation is an integral part of workers' compensation benefits in North Carolina. Unfortunately, workers' compensation insurance carriers often use vocational rehab as a kind of sledge hammer, to get the injured worker to work through injuries or forego additional benefits. They often use heavy-handed tactics that an experienced workers' compensation lawyer can help you avoid.
What Is Vocational Rehabilitation?
Vocational Rehabilitation is a "service" provided by the insurance carrier in cases where it has been determined that the employee is not able to or otherwise will not return to the position in which the injury occurred. When that happens, the carrier should engage a professional specifically trained to assist you in finding suitable employment. The workers' compensation insurance carrier can insist that you participate in vocational rehabilitation services and will more than likely attempt to stop your benefits if you unjustifiably refuse to do so. Their goal, of course, is to get you back to work and off of their benefit payments.
They Want You to Give Up Your Benefits
The vocational rehabilitation provider is supposed to create an individualized vocational plan for you and guide you to appropriate job opportunities. Often, the plans don't work and the job prospects aren't real. Your workers' compensation lawyer must have the experience to ensure the carrier and vocational rehab specialists are enforcing the workers' comp rules, not coercing you into giving up benefits.
Vocational rehabilitation should be a win-win situation for carrier and worker, but it doesn't always turn out that way. Too often, the intent is to frustrate the worker into accepting a premature settlement. If you don't settle, but refuse to participate in the vocational rehab, the carrier can file an official motion to terminate your benefits involuntarily.
Free Consultation · No Attorneys Fees Unless You Recover Benefits or Damages
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey G. Scott, you get 20 years of experience filing successful North Carolina workers' compensation claims, whether for injury by an industrial, construction or manufacturing accident or by occupational disease. I promise you personalized attention with a focus on two factors: getting your claim moving forward quickly and much-needed benefits in your hands.
If you were injured on the job, get legal help with your claim. From my offices in Charlotte, I represent clients throughout the Charlotte metro region and communities throughout the State of North Carolina. Contact me by phone, fax or e-mail about your workplace injury today.