Working After A Nebraska Car Accident?
Nebraska is an at-will employment state. That means that you will remain employed only if the employee and the employer want you to stay employed. Even if the accident was not your fault, your employer can lose patience and fire you even if you do not think they should be able to do so. Never give your employer a reason to be unhappy with you if you can help it.
Sometimes you have no choice about being able to work. If you are completely unable to do your job, you should talk to your doctor about it. They can document that you are prevented from working and that often helps when talking to your employer. You may be completely prevented from working or you may be limited to reduced hours. You also may be limited by being unable to stand or sit for a long time. There may be lifting restrictions.
Always be considerate and keep your employer informed about your medical condition and work restrictions. Even if you have good reasons that you can’t work, if you do not talk to your work supervisor, missing time will just be a no-call, no-show situation to them if you do not keep them informed. You always want your employer to be able to have as much warning as possible if they are going to need to find someone else to fill in for you. That is just being considerate.
I always tell my clients that they should work if at all possible. Even if it is somewhat inconvenient or uncomfortable to work, it is better to keep your employer happy by working if at all possible. The only time that you should avoid working is if your doctor tells you that you will injure yourself if you continue working. One way to keep your employer happy is to plan to have your treatment impact your work as little as possible. Make your doctor’s appointments outside of your normal work hours or during your lunch break whenever possible. It is normal to treat with a doctor at the same time that you are working but no employer will like it if you take too much time off from work for appointments. In addition to keeping your employer happy, it is usually best to keep earning a paycheck. Even if you are able to get reimbursed for the time you missed from work when the claim settles, that will not happen until the end of a claim. In the meantime, your finances can suffer seriously.
Another consideration about missing work is now taking a long time off will make you look. The insurance company or a jury could decide that you are a lazy malingerer if you take too much time off from work. In fact, taking an excessive amount of time off can hurt the value of your claim. Also, insurance adjusters are smart and they will recognize a scam when they see one. Even though I always encourage my clients to continue working if possible, I am surprised by how often I get told by clients that they were hurt so badly that they had to quit their job or they had to take several months off from work but that they did not seek medical treatment during the time that they were off from work. That does not make sense and being a malingerer does not contribute to having a strong injury claim.
Normally the lost wage claim is a much smaller part of an injury claim than other factors such as the severity of the injury, the treatment required to recover from your injuries and whether or not you make a full recovery. Most of the time, I encourage my clients to get back to work as soon as reasonably possible.
There are other jurisdictions in which employees have more rights than in Nebraska. Unless you have a strong union to back you up or you are in a management position with a contract that protects you, your employer usually has the upper hand and you will not have any rights if they fire you after an accident that happened outside of work, even if it was not your fault. We are in Nebraska and even if employees are not well protected here, it is best to know what to expect.
Call Steven Montag at (800) 533-0067 today for a free initial consultation. We are always dedicated to helping injured people. Evening and weekend calls are welcome.