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Northwest OH Legal Blog

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Staying Eligible for Temporary Total Disability

An injured worker is eligible for Temporary Total Disability when he or she is hurt at work, cannot return to the job he or she was working when injured, and a different “light duty” job is unavailable. If the injured worker stays with that employer, there is usually little concern. But injured workers are often concerned if they can change jobs. If an injured worker changes jobs, will he or she receive temporary total compensation if the injury is re-aggravated?

According to the Ohio Supreme Court, the employer is free to switch jobs. Back in 2000, in a case called Baker v. Industrial Commission, the Supreme Court examined this exact issue, where the Industrial Commission did not allow Temporary Total Disability to be paid unless the injured worker stayed with the employer he or she worked when hurt. The Court said, “the workers’ compensation system cannot be used to chain a worker to a specific employer,” and held “that when a claimant is medically released to return to work following an industrial injury leaves his or her former position of employment to accept another position of employment, the claimant is eligible to receive temporary total disability compensation…should the claimant re-aggravate the original industrial injury.”

Of course, you cannot work and receive Temporary Total Disability (although if you make less because of the injury, you could be eligible for Wage Loss. But this is another discussion). But, the door is open to receive benefits later on if deemed necessary. This works great for workers who wish to switch jobs they can perform after being hurt, as most claimants would rather earn an income than live on disability payments.

BUT REMEMBER: An injured worker must not voluntary abandon his or her employment. If the doctor sets restrictions, and the employer offers work within those restrictions, the injured worker cannot leave that job and receive temporary total disability. He or she will only be eligible for future payments if he or she re-enters the workforce.

As always, if you have questions regarding your Worker’s Compensation claim, contact the firm of Allotta | Farley at (419) 535-0075 for a free consultation. 


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With offices in Toledo and Lima, OH Allotta Farley Co., L.P.A. serves clients throughout northwest OH with various legal matters. Areas of service include Allen County, Ashland County, Auglaize County, Crawford County, Defiance County, Erie County, Fulton County, Hancock County, Hardin County, Henry County, Huron County, Lucas County, Marion County, Mercer County, Morrow County, Ottawa County, Paulding County, Putnam County, Richland County, Sandusky County, Seneca County, Van Wert County, Williams County, Wood County, Wyandot County.

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| Phone: 419.535.0075
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