Going Back to Work after an Accident

Injury victims are often very uncertain about how to handle returning to work. On one hand, you need the money badly. On the other hand, you may be afraid that if you do go back to work it could hurt your claim. In reality, if you are able to return to work you should. Injury victims who can work and choose not to are looked upon unfavorably by juries. However, you should not return to work if it is going to exacerbate your injuries. In some cases, you can do some work, but not at the same level as before your accident. In general, you should follow doctor’s orders and make sure your doctor’s recommendations are documented in your records.

Why You Should Return to Work if You Can

You can recover compensation for lost income, but only if there is a medical basis for your missing work. If your doctor clears you for work but you choose not to, it can hurt your case. If you truly feel that you cannot work yet, there are a couple of things you can do.

You can try going back to work and see how it goes. If you find it too painful or tiring, or if your symptoms get worse, report this to your doctor and get reevaluated. If you feel like you will be putting yourself or others in danger by returning to work, get a second opinion first.

Many injury victims find that they feel better and recover more quickly after returning to work. You may need to go back to work on a limited basis, working shorter hours or performing lighter tasks than before your accident. Returning to work can actually prove that you are making an effort and that you are not trying to milk your injury, which works in your favor.

Keeping Records

If working causes pain, fatigue, or problems in other areas of your life such as your relationships or your ability to participate in your other normal activities, make detailed notes in your injury journal. Your accident attorney will also want statements from family and friends who witness or are affected by this. Rather than contributing to your lost income damages, it will contribute to your pain and suffering and other non-economic damages, which can be far more valuable to you.

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