Legal Question in Workers Comp in Virginia

I injured a tendon on one of the fingers on my right hand 8 months ago. I have been receiving Workman's Compensation since the accident. I have had surgery on the hand that was injured, and also surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome at a later date, although I do not have a job that required repetitive motion.

My Workman's Comp. has terminated, and I have been released by my doctor to resume working at an animal hospital in Virginia. My question is: what is my former employer's responsibility to re-hire me, and how long does he have to pay for my medical insurance?

Asked on 5/09/10, 8:16 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Gerald Lutkenhaus Virginia Workers Compensation & Disability Lawyer

I have been a Virginia Workers Compensation attorney for 35 years. You indicate your Virignia Workers Compensation was terminated. I assume this is because your doctor released you to return to work. If you have a permanent injury to that hand then you can file a claim for the permanent loss of the finger or hand.

Most employers cannot terminate an employee unless he/she has missed more than 90 days of work under the Federal Medical Leave Act (FMLA). You indicated you have missed more than 90 days. Some employers will preserve a job longer than 90 days you should check the company personnel policy.

If your job has been terminated, the employer will terminate your health insurance and probably send you a COBRA notice. Under COBRA you are allowed to continue the health insurance as long as you pay it yourself.

If you have been released to return to your animal hospital job with NO WORK RESTRICTIONIS, then you have no protection under the Virginia Workers Compensation Act. If you have additional questions, please contact me or look at

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Answered on 5/19/10, 7:09 am

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