Written by attorney Michael H. Gruhin

Voluntary Abandonment & Its Impact on Temporary Total Disability Compensation

Don’t make a mistake and take the wrong action in your Ohio BWC claim. You should discuss your claim with a Board Certified Ohio Workers’ Compensation Specialist Attorney.

Under current Ohio Law, employees who voluntarily resign employment, even though the employee has an active and ongoing workers’ compensation claim, are ineligible to receive temporary total disability compensation even though, after the voluntary abandonment, the injured worker underwent surgery for the allowed conditions in the Ohio Workers’ Compensation claim. State ex rel. Lackey v. Indus. Comm., 129 Ohio St.3d 119, 2011-Ohio-3089.

Based on Ohio Law, before an injured worker decides to terminate employment, either by retiring or quitting, it is critical to discuss this decision with a Board Certified Ohio Workers’ Compensation Specialist Attorney. Without a thorough review of your situation with a Certified Specialist you could run into serious trouble in obtaining certain money benefits ( Temporary Total Disability-TTD, Wage Loss-WL, Permanent Total Disability-PTD) in your OhioBWC claim.

The Ohio Supreme Court stated that temporary total disability must arise from a condition that was caused by the industrial injury and, to be payable, where the injured worker has not voluntarily left or abandoned the work force.

Additionally, Ohio Law holds that termination of an employee’s employment for cause (violation of work rule, etc.) is also considered a voluntary abandonment of employment, precluding the payment of TTD.

Thus, the only way an injured worker can obtain TTD benefits once a voluntary abandonment of employment has been found to have taken place is to find other employment and re-enter the job market. Once re-entry has taken place, should the injured worker then become unable to perform job duties as a direct result of the allowed BWC claim conditions and is prevented from performing his/her job duties, at the new place of employment, due to the originally allowed conditions, then the injured worker would again be eligible to seek TTD benefits (or, in the appropriate circumstances, Permanent Total Disability – PTD benfits) in the previously allowed workers’ comp claim.

However, should a new injury or an aggravation to the prior condition take place at the new place of employment, this situation must be discussed with a Board Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialist Attorney. There are many nuances to a BWC claim. There are time limits and taking the wrong course of action can severely impact on any Ohio BWC claim.

Call Mike Gruhin, The Comp Specialist, to discuss any aspect of your Ohio Workers’ Compensation Claim. Act now, Call now!

Additional Resources

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