Workers’ Compensation in Connecticut.
What Rights Do You Have In New London Connecticut to Miss Work After a Work Related Injury, Get Paid, and Protect Your Job At the Same Time.
Temporary Total Disability in New London, Connecticut.
Many people are confused about disability benefits under the Connecticut Workers Compensation Act. Work disability benefits in a Workers Compensation case are called temporary total disability benefits, or TTD benefits. These benefits are wage replacement benefits. In practice, however, less then full wages are paid. If you are totally disabled from work you can (1) miss work, and (2) receive benefits. Additionally, if you have a serious medical condition you can take unpaid leave from work under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
The general rule--
In order to prove that you are entitled to miss work and receive workers compensation benefits your doctor must say that you cannot work at all, or that you can work but only with certain restrictions determined by the doctor. To miss work under the FMLA you must have a serious medical condition.
There are several important points to keep in mind when dealing with temporary total disability benefits and the FMLA.
First, it is your doctor’s opinion that counts. Not yours. You need to get an opinion from your doctor.
Second, you need a written report from your doctor. The starting point to receiving temporary total disability benefits is a written opinion from our doctor that states that you cannot work due to the injury that was caused on the job. Under the FMLA, you also must have a written report or a leave form that is filled in. Get it in writing.
Third, don’t forget that the injury itself must be caused on the job for a Workers Compensation claim. So, make sure when the doctor prepare the report that says you cannot work, the doctor also addresses the question of causation—that the injury was caused on the job. For an FMLA claim, the injury does not need be caused on the job. The cause of the injury is not relevant under the FMLA.
Fourth, your employer’s insurance company has some say in the matter too. The employer or the respondent in a workers compensation case has to right to have you reviewed by a doctor of their choice in a respondent’s medical examination. If that doctor disagrees with your doctor about your ability to work, then if the dispute can’t be resolved by a compromise, the Workers Compensation Commissioner will decide the issue. So, you might have a formal hearing or a trial on the matter. Additionally, under the FMLA, your employer can send you to an employer’s medical exam.
Fifth, don’t forget about the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) in your Worker’s Compensation case. If your injury is such that your doctor can’t state you are totally disabled from work, and it you still insist that you just can’t work, then try to qualify under the FMLA. If you have a “serious medical condition” as that term is defined by the FMLA then you can take unpaid leave of 12 weeks under the federal FMLA, and 16 weeks under the Connecticut FMLA. Leave under the FMLA is unpaid, but at least it is excused leave, which means that your employer can’t fire you or penalize you in any way for taking the leave.
If you or anyone you know has a serious injury caused on the job then contact the New London Workers Compensation lawyers at The Bartinik Law Firm, PC., 100 Fort Hill Road, Groton, CT., 860 445 8521 or toll free at 888 717 4211.
© Peter J. Bartinik, Jr., Esq.
About the author, Peter J. Bartinik, Jr. Esq.
Peter J. Bartinik, Jr. is a board certified civil trial lawyer practicing law in Connecticut. He is Board Certified in Civil Trial Advocacy by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. He is on the Board of Governors of the Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association. He is also licensed in Rhode Island, but the vast majority of his practice is in Connecticut. He has received the designation Super Lawyer for Connecticut and New England for each year continuously since 2006 when that rating system started. He has a perfect “10” Avvo rating. He gives seminars to other lawyers on personal injury trial practice topics such a proof of damages, and evidence. He is an author. He has authored book on the topics of personal injury practice including How to Put Your Best Foot Forward in Your Truck or Car Accident Case in Connecticut, published in 2013.
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