Can I Get Another Job While on Workers’ Comp?
A question we often receive from clients about workers' compensation is whether their decision to pursue a new job will negatively impact their claim. The short answer is no, it will not, as the issuance of workers' comp benefits is not contingent upon remaining with an employer, only the work injury and the need to pay for resultant healthcare costs and lost wages.
The following post goes into further detail about this subject and offers our team's perspective informed by past experiences. Nonetheless, we encourage injured individuals who are considering filing a claim and pursuing new employment to work with a qualified Maryland workers' compensation attorney. Doing so helps ensure their claim is filed properly and they do not navigate the process alone.
Workers' Compensation and Changing Jobs
As a reminder, workers' compensation benefits are meant to help injured employees get the treatment and financial support they need. Given this situation and that there is no clause tying being injured to remaining in a role afterward, a worker may consider seeking a new position elsewhere, especially if they feel ostracized by their employer or do not wish to return to the place where they were injured.
Considerations for Job Searching While Receiving Workers' Comp Benefits
Impact on Benefits
In the event someone is off work and receiving temporary total disability benefits and quits their job to take a new job, their temporary total disability benefits will stop. Their right to other benefits, however, will continue. A case does not stop just because an injured worker has a new job.
Injured Worker is Not on Leave, But Pursues a New Job
If an individual receives a job offer while receiving workers' compensation benefits and is not on leave due to their injury, they are in the same position as any other person who is changing jobs. For example, you will need to:
- Give notice and start working for the new employer and their workers' compensation attorney
- If an injury worsens or the worker requires additional treatment, their rights remain the same as they would have been having they never changed jobs
Injured Worker is on Leave and Pursues a New Job
In the event the injured worker was off duty and pursuing a new job, their first step is to discuss their recovery and ability to work with a medical professional. Additionally, workers considering a job switch will want to consider its effect on the medical and wage benefits they currently receive. Rushing to start a new job without being cleared to do so may complicate an individual's claim process, specifically exposing them to losing their benefits if an employer's insurance company finds the employee to be fully recovered. Furthermore, they will want to inform their workers' comp lawyer so that they are aware as their claim is processed.