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What to do if your old job isn’t an option after a workplace accident

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Many injuries that workers suffer on the job only leave them with temporary impairments that resolve in a matter of days or a few short weeks. Workers, in these instances, may be able to alert their employers about the injuries and modify their daily tasks yet still go to work. Others may need to take a brief period off work to recuperate before returning to their roles.

Taking a temporary break from work isn’t good enough to help some workers regain their functionality and reassume the same role they held before they got hurt. You do have options if you can’t work in the same job you once did after suffering a work injury.

Could you potentially qualify for partial disability benefits?

Your North Carolina worker’s compensation benefits can help you cover your medical bills and aid you in recouping some of your lost income if you suffer an injury on the job and/or miss work.

The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act, §97-31-1 outlines different injuries workers may suffer on the job, how much compensation they’re entitled to and for what amount of time. It covers such injuries as:

  • The loss of a limb
  • Head or facial disfigurements
  • Organ damage
  • The loss of use of one’s back

These are only a few of the injuries listed.

Some impairments may leave you permanently disabled, unable to return to the job that you did well for so many years. You may need to retrain for another job that you can more easily perform in that situation. If that’s impossible due to the extent of your injuries, then you may need to consider applying for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

Keep in mind that the Social Security Administration (SSA) might not see your medical condition as disabling as the government agency maintains a strict definition of impairment. The best time to start building a potential case for disability benefits is soon after a workplace accident occurs when you’re just beginning to receive workers’ compensation benefits. This will ensure that you compile the necessary records along the way to help build a solid case for why you need SSD if it comes down to it.