Can I Work While Collecting Workers’ Compensation?
While workers injured on the job and receiving workers’ compensation can work while collecting benefits, they must report their earnings. If you fail to report your earnings or lie about your second job, you may be sued for workers’ compensation fraud.
If you were injured in the course and scope of employment and cannot perform your regular job duties because of your injury, you can receive workers’ compensation, which includes a portion of your regular wages.
However, the workers’ comp benefits may not cover all of your essential expenses, and you may not be able to make both ends meet. For this reason, you may consider finding a different job to work while collecting workers’ compensation benefits.
Before you take on a second job while receiving compensation, it is advisable to consult with a Tampa workers’ compensation attorney to ensure that you do not lose your eligibility to collect workers’ compensation.
Can You Find Another Job While Collecting Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
As a rule of thumb, you can find another job and work while collecting workers’ compensation benefits as long as:
- The second job is not as physically demanding as your primary job, for which you are currently receiving workers’ comp benefits; and
- The second job does not aggravate your injury.
It means that if you were injured at work while performing physically demanding tasks (e.g., moving heavy objects), your second job should not be as physically demanding as the primary one. However, you may be able to take an office or sedentary job.
If you cannot perform your previous job duties after a workplace accident and are collecting workers’ compensation benefits, you cannot take on a job that is as physically demanding.
What Happens if My Employer Finds Out That I’m Working While Collecting Workers’ Comp?
If you are eligible for workers’ compensation because your work-related injury prevents you from working at full capacity, you may get in trouble if your employer finds out that you are working while collecting the benefits.
Note: As mentioned earlier, you can work while receiving workers’ compensation benefits if your job is not as physically demanding as your primary job and your second job does not worsen your injury.
If you are performing physically demanding work that you claim you cannot perform and your employer finds out about your demanding second job, you may be accused of workers’ compensation fraud.
Contact a skilled attorney if you were caught working a second job while collecting workers’ compensation benefits. Your lawyer will protect your rights and ensure that you do not lose your eligibility for workers’ compensation.
Consult with a Tampa Workers’ Compensation Attorney
It is advisable to seek the legal counsel of an experienced lawyer to help you navigate the workers’ compensation claims process. You need to discuss your particular case with a knowledgeable attorney to determine if you can work while collecting workers’ comp benefits if you:
- Had a second job before you sustained a work-related injury; or
- Are considering getting a second job while receiving workers’ compensation benefits.
Your attorney will help you understand your options to help you avoid accusations of workers’ compensation fraud. Speak with our workers’ compensation attorney Jason Kobal to talk about your particular case. Call 813-873-2440 for a case review.