What happens if your injury prevents you from returning to work?

Dealing with a workplace injury can leave you emotionally drained as you navigate new challenges. Assessing the likelihood of returning to your former job will take time and consideration.

The extent of your injuries, your desire to work and the flexibility of your employer will all influence your future. Your doctor can also help you determine whether or not returning to your job is a realistic possibility.

Negotiate a transition

Serious injuries that result in permanent disabilities may interfere with the skills and abilities required to perform your job functions. Accepting that you will never work the same again can take an emotional toll and sour your desire to regain your independence. However, the sooner you can identify new goals, the more incentivized you may feel to continue your recovery.

In some circumstances, you may have the option of negotiating a return-to-work plan with your employer. Perhaps you can transfer to another department or takeover a new, modified set of responsibilities. Depending on your type of work, you may have the option of telecommuting or working a hybrid schedule that allows you to make a living despite your disabilities.

Participate in vocational rehabilitation

If you need to find a new job altogether, your employer may have resources to direct you toward promising opportunities. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, vocational rehabilitation can provide you with a host of resources to aid in your search for a new job.

You can participate in testing designed to help you assess your skills and identify which ones will transfer to other jobs. Based on your results, you may find employment opportunities that you feel qualified to pursue.



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