Workers’ compensation is a legal provision to financially compensate workers injured at work. Since you’re off the job, you may want to know if you can go on vacation while on workers’ compensation. Indeed, you can go on vacation while on workers’ compensation, but it’s not a guarantee that you should.
If you must, ensure that you don’t engage in activities against your physician’s advice or other experts. Alternatively, consult your accident attorney for legal guidance to avoid sabotaging your compensation case. Before making trip reservations, consider how a holiday can affect your workers’ compensation case.
How To Go on Vacation While on Workers’ Compensation and Remain Legit
The primary issue about taking a vacation while on workers’ compensation is to ensure that whatever happens when you’re away will not be used against you. Taking a while on benefits can be a risk if reports from your vacation provide evidence that can indicate your injuries aren’t that serious. Hence, you can be incriminated and taken off the benefits.
You can take a vacation because you’re free to recover, but you must ensure that the holiday will not conflict with your status as injured or disabled. Technically, being on workers’ compensation means you’re taking time off work to recover and resume work.
Here are some pointers you should consider if you decide to vacation.
Keep Up with Medical Appointments
Attending your medical appointments and treatment as scheduled while obtaining workers’ compensation. The benefits are meant to support workers financially as they recover from injuries. Suppose you skip a doctor’s appointment or other treatment while on vacation. Then the insurance paying for workers’ compensation has ground to argue you’ve recovered.
As a result, your benefits will be discontinued, and you’ll be expected to resume work. If you reschedule an appointment with your doctor because you’re on vacation, the vacation could work against you. So, if you’re leaving town for a holiday, ensure you’ll be on time for your medical appointments.
While planning your vacation, ensure that your activities comply with your status restrictions. Make sure that whoever sees you while on vacation gets the picture of an injured person. If your holiday is physically active and your insurer or employer gets photos of you engaging, your benefits can be canceled. You also need to be clear to the people who go on vacation with you to avoid posting pictures or videos on social media that may create a wrong impression or be used against you.
Some travel arrangements that require you to sit in a plane or car for hours might also be inappropriate for someone with injuries. Taking on such challenges might be interrupted like your injuries aren’t as severe as you claim. Talk to your doctor about the activities you can and can’t engage in as per your injuries, and obey each instruction.
Steer Clear of Red Flags
Insurance companies will go to greater lengths to expose acts of fraud. For instance, they can hire investigators to tail the actions of workers’ compensation claimants to discredit them. They can go as far as contacting the staff in resorts claimants staying while on vacation, asking them to document your activities and any sign indicating you aren’t as injured.
To avoid these complications and ‘witch hunts,’ you can avoid the vacation while on workers’ compensation and wait till you recover. Going on vacation shortly before or after workers’ compensation can be a red flag to insurance companies. It’s not uncommon for claimants to commit fraud and use workers’ compensation to cover vacation expenses. So, the insurer knows what they’re doing when hiring an investigator to track and document a claimant’s activities.
How to Navigate Your Vacation On Workers’ Compensation
When receiving workers’ compensation, any vacation allowances you’re eligible for are mostly deducted from your ongoing benefits. The policy hinders you from taking vacations while on workers’ compensation payments. Sometimes, you can also collect employee accrued benefits, like Paid Time Off (PTO), or take it as cash when unused.
Union members with a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) can get vacation pay while on workers’ compensation. CBA often determines how employees’ vacation pay is attributed to their benefits. Navigating your vacation policy on workers’ compensation is challenging, but your attorney can help you understand any agreements in a policy.
Are You On workers’ compensation?
If your workers’ compensation case is open, it might not be a good idea to go on vacation. However, claimants have different circumstances as to why they’re on workers’ compensation, and traveling while receiving benefits can be okay for some. Suppose you want to take a vacation while on workers’ compensation. You better talk to an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation policies.