If the injury prevents the claimant from returning to their former job, they may need retraining to enter the job market. Whether the claimant is entitled to vocational rehabilitation depends on when they were inured:
- If the claimant was injured before July 2, 1987, and is permanently precluded from returning to the job they held at the time of their injury, they are entitled up to 52 weeks of mandatory vocational rehabilitation.
- If the claimant was injured after July 2, 1987, the offer of vocational rehabilitation is voluntary for the employer and/or insurance carrier.
The employer must pay the claimant TTD if the worker accepts the employer’s voluntary offer while the employer is trying to develop a plan to retrain the worker and during any retraining program. The employer can arbitrarily stop offering vocational rehabilitation with a fourteen (14) day written notice to the claimant, however, which also means the TTD would stop.
Vocational rehabilitation can take many forms – schooling, vocational schooling, on the job training and so forth. (Sections 8-42-105(1), 8-42-111(3), C.R.S.).
As a practical matter, carriers rarely offer vocational rehabilitation benefits since it is a voluntary type of benefit.
Cairns & Associates, P.C.
3900 E. Mexico Avenue
Denver, CO 80210
Phone (303) 481-6345
Fax (866) 277-0355