Most people want to resume a normal life after suffering a workplace injury. Unfortunately, there are times when that may not be possible. Damage done can limit the person’s mobility or ability to complete tasks. Treatment may require weeks or even months, which means they may be out of work for a while. So what happens when an employer tries to force an employee to go back to work after an injury?
Employer – Employee Communication
Communication is necessary to ensure that both parties understand the limitations experienced by the injured person. That means you need to talk to your employer and let them know what’s going on. Together, you should come up with:
- A reasonable estimate of your off-work recovery time
- A plan that will allow you to return to work
- A list of duties that you will be able to perform after returning
This should be your first step to ensure that your employer isn’t misunderstanding the situation or the severity of your injury.
If you are on workers’ compensation, then the insurer (most likely WorkCover Queensland) will assist you and the employer in returning you to suitable work.
Workplace Discrimination Against Injured Employees
If you have attempted to communicate with your employer or WorkCover and they are refusing to work with you, then you may need to seek outside help. Businesses are not permitted to discriminate against employees due to an injury. If you are on workers’ compensation there are also other laws that your employer and WorkCover must follow. All types of employees are protected including full time, part time, trainees, temporary workers, and apprentices.