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What Happens When An Injury Prevents You From Working?

What Happens When An Injury Prevents You From Working?
Christian J. Amendt

When you suffer an injury that removes you from the workforce, you may wonder how to address your circumstances with your employer. Keeping them in the loop may reduce the repercussions of your time away.

Regardless of whether or not your injury happened at work, you may still desire to return to your former job as soon as possible. Proactively expressing this desire to your employer may improve your chances of getting your former job back when you recover enough to return to work.

Know your options

Depending on your circumstances and the type of work you perform, your options for returning to work could vary significantly. For example, you may have no chance of returning to work unless you fully recover, particularly in situations where your job requires hands-on, physical labor. On the contrary, a more minor injury may impact your job some, but you may still have the option of telecommuting or performing modified tasks until you recover.

Your employer will dictate their expectations for your recovery in order for you to return to work.  Collaborating with your health care provider will also keep you informed of your progress. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, other leave options may include taking sick or personal leave. If your injury happened at work, you may also have the option of using workers’ compensation.

Maintain your network

A powerful reason for maintaining communication with your employer despite an injury is so you can maintain your professional network. Once you reach a point where you can reasonably return to work, having kept professional connections may ease your transition back into the workplace.

Even if your injury prevents you from returning to your former job, continuing professional relationships may point you in the direction of other job opportunities.

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