Returning to Work After an Injury – Ohio and Kentucky Are Very Different

Below we discuss how Ohio’s system for returning injured workers to work is very different from Kentucky’s system. This is true regardless of whether you are returning to your old job or a new job. Find out what you can expect if you have been injured on the job, but are now ready to go back to work.


Functional Capacity Evaluation

arm-in-castIf you have reached Maximum Medical Improvement but you still cannot return to your old job you may be in need of a Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE). An FCE is a test performed by a health care professional to see what previous job duties you can and cannot perform as a result of your work place injury. If you have reached Maximum Medical Improvement but you cannot go back to your same job, give us a call, we can help arrange an FCE for you.

Vocational Rehabilitation

Any injured worker may apply for vocational rehabilitation services. You may be eligible for retraining benefits if you have recovered from a work-related injury, but have not regained the physical capacity to return to the job you held before your injury. If you are an eligible candidate, you will be referred to an evaluation center nearest to your home. After reviewing the results of the evaluation, the specialist will then work with you to map out your rehabilitation goals and establish a plan to help you reach them. Ability levels and interests may lead you to any range of opportunities from short-term to more involved training.

If you believe vocational rehab is right for you give Lawrence & Associates a call. Vocational rehabilitation can help with:

  • Payment of direct school expenses such as tuition, textbooks and required fees for an initial period of 52 weeks;
  • Additional training, when justified, may be awarded by an administrative law judge on a case-by-case basis;
  • Other educational expenses such as transportation and room and board can be approved on a case-by-case basis;
  • Permanent total disability benefits may be paid at a higher rate during training;
  • Other awarded income benefits may be accelerated to provide an increase in weekly benefits during training.


Vocational Rehabilitation

Vocational rehabilitation is an individualized, comprehensive program focused on the safe, permanent and cost-effective return of injured workers to the workforce. Vocational rehab benefits the injured workers through programs that assist them in returning to work and maintaining their jobs. Case management professionals, who specialize in vocational rehab, develop and coordinate these services.

Vocational rehab plans are for long-term disability claims where more aggressive case management is required. If you believe you require a long term disability plan, call us, we can help make sure you get the assistance you need.

Remain at work programs

Remain at work programs are any methods used by the employer to keep injured workers on the job. Eligibility is determined through three factors:

  • The injured worker has an allowed or certified medical-only claim;
  • The injured worker is experiencing difficulty at work due to the allowed condition;
  • The employer, injured worker or physician has identified the difficulty.

If you meet these requirements, remain at work programs will keep you on the job and keep medical-only claims from becoming lost-time claims. This program is beneficial to certain injured workers because it maintains employment status and regular wages. If you believe you are one of these workers give us a call, we can help get you back to work!