Does Taking FMLA for a Chronic Injury Prevent Filing Workers Comp?
- Posted on: Aug 15 2021
Workers’ comp laws come into play if you are injured on the job, but that may not be the only benefit that comes into play. FMLA, which is short for the Family Medical Leave Act, provides qualifying employees to take up to 12 weeks off of work for illness, injury, and other specific health issues. FMLA protects your job while giving you the time you may need to recover. The injury that qualifies you for FMLA does not have to have occurred at work. However, it could.
What Does FMLA Cover?
FMLA is a very broad act that covers many different types of injuries. It even includes events such as the birth of a child or the adoption of a young child who needs care. You can also file for FMLA if your spouse, parent, or child has a serious health condition that requires you to take care of them for a short period of time. FMLA can give you time off to attend to an injury or an illness that makes it difficult or impossible to perform your normal job duties.
When FMLA and Workers’ Comp Cross Over
If you have been injured at work and require time off to rest and heal because you cannot do your job without rest, you likely qualify for both workers’ comp and FMLA under the last point mentioned above. You can take FMLA and workers’ comp benefits at the same time. You can also take FMLA time off instead of filing a workers’ comp claim or file a claim without using any FMLA leave.
The Differences Between the Two
The biggest difference between FMLA and workers’ comp is that FMLA is unpaid time off. Your employer can opt to pay you, but they are not required to. However, FMLA does protect your job. Your employer cannot fire you or eliminate your job. They have to continue to employ you in your position or an equivalent one.
Workers’ comp, though, does provide paid leave. However, you can only take workers’ comp leave if you were injured while at work. You will typically receive two-thirds of your normal salary, plus your medical bills will be covered. However, while employers cannot fire you for taking workers’ comp, they can eliminate your position, include you in company-wide layoffs, or even give you a lower position when you return to work.
Need help with a workers’ comp claim or determining which option you should take? Maximum Orthopedics is here to help. Contact us today to set up a free consultation.