Definitions that Plague the Doctors in Injury Cases in Workers’ Compensation Cases

Is there a difference between restrictions and limitations? What if your doctor is giving you work restrictions and is he also giving you limitations with regards to your work. Can you perform the light duty job that has been offered to you as to get you off the Workers' Compensation system and get you back into a modified job? Does the Doctor understand the difference between the job restrictions and job limitations in your ability to work?

How has the doctor concluded that you have restrictions? Was an FCE (functional capacity evaluation) performed? Does the doctor rely on the FCE or does he/she come up with their own limitations irrespective of the measurements provided by the FCE.

These are very important questions and make a huge difference in whether the employers will offer light duty or will allow you to return to work in an appropriate job or whether the modified job will lead to job failure and termination.

I spent my entire legal career dealing with these issues. If your doctor is genuinely in your corner, that physician will take the time to educate himself as to your functional restrictions and will not try to” set you up for failure”. Insurance adjusters put a lot of pressure on the insurance doctors to return the worker to alternative work and many times pre-maturely. This causes immense problems.


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