Your employer or its insurer may seek to modify your injured worker benefits if your work injury disability status changes. If you are receiving total disability compensation, your employer or insurer can request an impairment rating evaluation (IRE) within 60 days of the 104-week anniversary of the start of your workplace injury benefits. If the evaluation shows that you have an impairment rating of less than 50 percent, your status will change to a partial disability. You will then only be entitled to a maximum of 500 weeks of workers’ compensation benefits.
Your workman’s comp benefits may also be modified if you have recovered from your work injuries or illness enough to return to work in any capacity. The employer may offer an injured worker a job the employer feels is physically and vocationally appropriate for the injured worker to perform. Or, the workers’ compensation insurance carrier can have the injured worker evaluated by a vocational counselor to determine the earning power of the injured worker. In either scenario, the employer and the workers’ compensation insurance carrier will be trying to modify the work-related accident benefits of the injured worker.
If you are contacted by a vocational expert, you can expect that your employer or its insurance carrier will soon be seeking to modify your workers’ compensation benefits. The vocational expert will conduct an earning power evaluation, in conjunction with labor market surveys, to determine if there is a “lighter duty” job that you are capable of performing and if such a position is available to you. If the vocational expert determines that there is a job that you can do, even while your recovery continues, your employer or its insurer will seek to lower or stop workplace accident benefits. You will soon receive a notice of a Petition to Modify or Suspend Compensation Benefits.
Another clear indication your employer or its insurance carrier may be looking to completely cut off your medical and wage-loss benefits is that you are requested to visit a physician chosen by your employer or the insurer for an independent medical exam (IME). The examination is for the purpose of procuring an opinion that you are fully recovered or at least recovered enough to return to some form of employment. Armed with the report of the physician, your employer or its insurer will file a Petition to Terminate your work injury benefits if the IME physician feels you fully recovered from your work injuries.
When a petition to modify or terminate your benefits is filed, including a Notice Stopping Payment of Temporary Compensation Benefits, it is imperative that you waste no time contacting an experienced Workers’ Compensation lawyer to assist you in defense of the petition. Preserving your rights to work-related injury benefits if you are still injured and unable to return to work requires immediate action. The workplace lawyers of Pearson Koutcher Law, have assisted countless job injury clients throughout Pennsylvania and the surrounding areas, to defend against unjust attempts by insurance carriers to modify or terminate Workers’ Compensation benefits. If you are concerned that your injured worker benefits may be modified or terminated, or if you have already received a notice of a petition to do so, contact our office as soon as possible to protect your work injury rights under the law.
Pearson Koutcher Law only handles workers’ compensation cases in Philadelphia and the Lehigh Valley. With over forty years of combined experience, we know how to achieve the best outcomes for our clients. Our Workman’s Comp Attorneys provide outstanding workmen compensation services and have achieved extraordinary results. Through hard work, communication, and exceptional relationships with our clients, we can help you keep the work comp benefits you need. All clients are given the number of his or her workplace accident lawyer handling their workplace compensation case and are encouraged to call us whenever needed. Consultations are arranged around the work injury client’s schedule and can be set up at one of our local offices or in a place of residence. We serve work-related accident clients in the Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia, always offering unimpeachable aid in your time of need. Contact us for more info and assistance in keeping your workplace injury benefits.