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Workers Comp

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What is the name of your state? Michigan

I have worked for a major company for 20 years, I was injured because of the job in 1992, was working for the company and getting workmans comp. In 1996 I went back to my job with the ok of company doctors. They told me that I had a 4 hour restriction. I have worked these hours, take all the meds they prescribe, am never late for work, and volunteer for working an extra 4 hours on Saturday when they need help. Well with the economy getting worse the company has laid off thousands of employees. I have enough seniority, so I have not been worried about getting laid off. However today they basically told me that if I can't work a full day, that they don't need me anymore. Do they have the right to do this, even if I have proof from their own doctors that I am permanently injured from my job? If they tell me that they don't have work for me, do I lose my workmans comp benefits? What about health insurance? Any help would be greatly appreciated.



Senior Member
Yes, the employer has the right to do this. They have by far exceeded their obligation to you under WC reg's. Over and above paying for your medical bills and lost time (which they were obligated to do), it sounds as though they kept you on leave status for four years and then reinstated you to part-time work within your restrictions when you were able to return. They weren't obligated to do either of those things.

As your employer has been very generous and thousands of other employees have been laid off, there is absolutely no basis to assume they are retalliating because you filed a WC claim. Additonally, in mass layoff situations like this it is very common for part-time jobs to be eliminated. Having an open WC claim doesn't entitle you to special protections in a situation like this - it only entitles you to be treated the same as other employees would be in similar circumstances.

If you are laid off or terminated, your WC benefits do not go away. Your condition will continue to be covered, although I expect there will come a point in time when the WC carrier will want to make a settlement of your claim, which would have happened whether you were actively at work or not.

As far as your health insurance goes, you will be entitled to COBRA continuation, just as any other employee is when they are laid off or terminated.

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