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In some situations, an injured worker may be entitled to vocational rehabilitation, which is basically training for a new type of work. If your injury is permanent and prevents you from going back to your previous line of work, vocational rehabilitation can bridge the gap and help you move on to find work in another area.
Vocational rehab isn’t automatic. The main goal in workers’ compensation is to provide the medical treatment necessary to get you back to work. However, it’s not always possible, especially with a serious or permanent injury. Once your doctor determines that your medical condition has improved as much as it’s going to, you may be eligible for vocational rehabilitation. It generally has to be approved by the insurance company.
Vocational rehabilitation can include training to acquire new skills, as well as help with your job search. Rehab is generally only approved in cases where there’s a good chance that it’s going to make a difference. And if the employee isn’t a willing participant &endash; attending meetings, trainings and job interviews &endash; then rehab services might be terminated.
If vocational rehabilitation services are available but the insurance company won’t provide them in your case, you may be able to request a hearing. Talk to an experienced work injury attorney if you think you are a good candidate for vocational rehabilitation.
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