In the aftermath of a workplace injury, your recovery is a priority. When you reach a point where your recovery progresses enough, you might consider returning to work. You have a few options available when you are ready for that step.
There are three choices to consider depending on your current progress in recovery and any lingering challenges.
1. Modified work environment
Sometimes, you can return to the job you had before your injury but you cannot perform all of the duties without some support. Your employer has a legal obligation to provide reasonable accommodations for your return to work, such as additional equipment for physical support or reduced work activities. As you recover further, you may be able to eliminate those accommodations.
2. Alternative work environment
In some cases, your previous position becomes prohibited based on your long-term prognosis or physical condition. In those instances, your employer can offer an alternative position that fits your needs. Your alternative position must be reasonably equivalent in pay and benefits, though it may not match.
3. Original work environment
When your recovery progresses enough, your doctor may release you to return to your original position. Your employer must maintain your pre-injury pay rate and benefits, making your return to work equivalent to the prior environment.
Discuss your current recovery status with your doctor and notify your employer of your desire to return to work. They can help you determine which situation most effectively fits your needs and help you make that transition as easily as possible.