Can You Work Part-Time and Collect Workers’ Comp? Here’s What You Need to Know

March 8 2023

Depending on the state in which you live, you may be eligible for partial wage replacement if you return to work part-time while recovering from an injury. It is important to consult with a lawyer who specializes in workers’ compensation to review your individual case and make sure you receive the benefits you are entitled to.

What is Workers’ Compensation?

Workers’ compensation is a type of state-mandated insurance that provides medical benefits and lost wages to employees who have been injured, or developed an illness or disability, on the job. Workers’ comp can cover you regardless of who was at fault for your injury. It typically pays for medical bills related to have been injured on the job, as well as any lost wages associated with that illness or injury.

Without workers’ comp laws and regulations, employees often had no recourse if an employers refused to pay lost wages due to an injury on the job. The concept of “no fault” means that states and employers must provide physical and financial support for those who have become disabled or ill due to work-related issues.

While workers’ compensation offers the assurance of some legal protection and benefits for those injured on the job, it can still be controversial. Some debate whether it should cover off-the-clock activities, like travel to job sites or use of employer tools from home. Others question whether employees can really collect damages if they ignore explicit warnings about risks in their workplace. Whatever your opinion on these topics may be, it is important to know your rights when it comes to understanding what qualifies for compensation under workers’ comp laws.

By understanding the specifics of workers’ comp laws, you can better determine if you are eligible for coverage in cases involving part-time employment with work-related injuries or illnesses. With this knowledge in hand, we can now move on to exploring the topic of whether one can work part-time while collecting workers’ comp.

  • A study conducted in 2016 found that almost 66% of workers’ compensation claims involved part-time employees.
  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 48 percent of part-time employees are eligible for workers’ comp benefits, while 55 percent of full-time employees are covered by workers’ comp insurance.
  • The average amount of benefits received by part-time employees ranges from 50%-80% of their lost wages, depending on their state’s laws.

Can You Work Part-Time and Collect Workers’ Comp?

Whether you can work part-time and still collect workers’ comp benefits depends on the particular circumstances of your situation. If a worker has been injured and is unable to work full-time, they may be able to receive workers’ comp payments for the amount of time that they are unable to work. Depending on their state’s laws, employers may also be required to return an injured employee to a lesser role requiring fewer hours or pay if there is no full-time role available.

Qualifying for workers’ comp benefits requires that the injury sustained by the worker is related to the job in some way. Generally speaking, the worker must have suffered an illness or injury within the course of carrying out their job duties. Injuries caused by non-work related activities such as accidents outside of the workplace will not be covered. This includes transportation to and from work if that transportation is provided by an employer.

In situations where a worker is partially disabled as a result of an on-the-job injury, a partial disability rating may be granted in order to determine whether they would qualify for workers’ comp benefits while working part-time. The degree of disability assessed will be based on factors such as how much income was lost due to the injury and how much income can reasonably be expected after returning to work.

The ability to receive workers’ compensation while working part-time is ultimately determined on a case-by-case basis. A person’s medical condition, the severity of their injury, and whether or not they are able to consistently pursue employment which requires fewer hours than their usual full-time position can all have a direct impact on eligibility for workers’ comp benefits.

Before returning to work part-time, it is important for injured employees to seek legal advice in order to understand any potential ramifications that could arise from their decision such as repayment requirements or terminations of benefits altogether.

It is possible for individuals who are injured at work to receive workers’ compensation benefits even if they are only working part-time hours. Knowing the laws applicable in your area and weighing your options carefully before making a decision is essential when attempting to qualify for or maintain workers’ comp eligibility while working part-time. Qualifying for Workers’ Comp Benefits will be discussed in greater detail in the following section.

Qualifying for Workers’ Comp Benefits

When it comes to collecting work-related injury and illness benefits, workers’ compensation laws vary from state to state. Generally speaking, however, to qualify for workers’ comp benefits you must meet certain criteria. Most importantly, the injury or illness must be considered work-related. That means it either:

• Occurred on the job or in a work setting

• Was caused by activities related to your job or work setting

• Developed over time due to working conditions

Another important factor when determining whether you are qualified for workers’ comp benefits is whether you were employed at the time of the injury or illness. This means you must have suffered an injury while on the clock, during a business trip, or while on a specific job assignment made by your employer. Furthermore, although some part-time employees may be eligible for workers’ comp benefits, this often depends on how many hours per week they worked and their overall status with the company.

The debate rages on as to whether part-time employees should receive the same benefits as full-time employees; there are pros and cons to each argument. On one hand, those who argue that part-time and full-time employees should receive equal benefits say that anyone who contributes to a company’s bottom line should be entitled to fair compensation regardless of hours worked. On the other hand, opponents say that each case should be examined separately depending on how much value an employee has added to the company as well as their overall contribution to organizational success.

No matter what side of the debate you fall on, it’s ultimately up to each individual state’s workers’ compensation laws to decide which parties are eligible for benefits and how much those benefits can amount to.

Now that we’ve gone over whether you qualify for workers’ comp benefits and discussed opposing points of view, let’s move on to exploring how to file a claim if you are eligible….

Filing a Workers’ Comp Claim

If you’re injured on the job, it’s important to file for workers’ comp benefits as soon as possible. You will need to submit an official claim form and present supporting evidence of your injury to your state workers’ compensation agency. Depending on your state’s laws and guidelines, you may need to complete specific forms or other paperwork in order to claim benefits. The process can be time-consuming, so it is essential that you get started right away to ensure your claim is completed properly and promptly.

There is debate surrounding whether part-time employees are eligible for workers’ comp claims. While some states make it explicitly clear that part-time workers are eligible for benefits, others give employers the option of excluding part-time workers from their eligibility requirements. No matter what your employer has agreed to do or required of you, it’s important that you follow all federal and state laws concerning workers’ compensation rights and benefits.

Some employers may also try to deny a worker’s comp claim because they feel the injury wasn’t work-related or was caused by something other than work activities. It’s important for part-time employees to understand their rights when filing a workers’ comp claim and know that they have the right to dispute claims that have been denied if they believe the denial is unfounded or invalid. Part-time employees should always seek legal advice if they disagree with their employer’s decision when it comes to a denied claim.

Before moving forward with filling out any kind of claim form, it’s imperative that you consult with an experienced attorney who can help guide you through the process and advise you on the best course of action depending on your specific situation and circumstances.

Now that we’ve discussed filing a workers’ comp claim, let’s take a look at gathering documentation from your employer in the next section.

Gather Documentation from your Employer

When making a workers’ compensation claim, it is critical that you gather necessary documentation from your employer. Key evidence to obtain includes the claim form, medical records, and potential witness statements.

The claim form is important because it provides official notice of your injury and will likely include information about you, the date of injury, and a detailed description of the incident. It’s important to fill out this form completely and as soon after your injury as possible in order to ensure an accurate record of the incident and avoid any accusations of fraud or dishonesty.

Additionally, gathering medical records is important in order to prove that the injury sustained was serious enough to prevent you from working. This might include doctor’s notes and any other related documentation.

Thirdly, if applicable, look into whether any witnesses may have seen the accident occur, as their account can be extremely valuable when filing for workers’ compensation benefits. Witnesses can provide strong evidence in support your claims should disagreements with employers arise regarding the incident and its consequences.

Ultimately, muster as much evidence as possible through these sources so that you can build a solid case for entitlement to workers’ compensation benefits. Doing so will help ensure that all benefits are extended appropriately and ensure that in the event of future challenges or reviews against your claim, you are armed with reliable evidence.

Moving on to the next section, let’s explore disability benefits and medical care available to those who have qualified for workers’ compensation benefits.

Disability Benefits and Medical Care

When an employee is injured or disabled and unable to continue their work on a full-time basis, they may be eligible for disability benefits. These disability benefits can provide long-term income while the employee is recovering from their injury or illness. The type of disability benefits available to an individual depend on the laws in the state where the injury occurred.

In addition to providing income, disability benefits also cover many medical costs associated with treatment for the injury or illness. This can include hospital bills, medication costs, physical therapy, and more. As such, it is important for employees to understand that depending on their state and the circumstances surrounding their injury; they may be able to get financial coverage for medical expenses without needing to go through workers’ compensation.

However, navigating this area of law can be complex and differ based on each individual’s unique situation. Even though an employee may collect disability income while out of work due to an injury or illness, they may also still be able to receive workers’ compensation through their employer, depending on the severity of their situation. In some cases, an employee might only receive a percentage of their weekly wages rather than full payouts due to working part-time hours which could reduce the amount of money that would otherwise be provided through workers’ compensation.

While disability benefits and medical care are invaluable resources for injured or disabled workers who are unable to work full-time, proper understanding of these laws and policies is key to ensuring that individuals receive the maximum payout possible through workers’ compensation and other governing agencies before they consider taking up part-time employment during their recovery period.

The next section will address how reducing income with part-time work could impact an individual’s ability to claim workers’ compensation benefits after an injury or illness.

Reducing Income with Part-Time Work

When someone is injured at work, typically the person receives wages for their lost time. In addition to workers’ comp wage benefits, an injured worker might choose — or in some cases be required — to work part-time while receiving wage benefits from workers’ comp. Working part-time can reduce income when employees are barred from returning to their full-time work due to an injury.

Nonetheless, the reduced wages can still provide a significant financial benefit since it limits the financial difficulty that come with being unable to return to full-time hours and lost wages due to an injury. Moreover, working part-time allows individuals to remain engaged and stay connected with the job market which can help them make a smooth transition back into full-time work once they are able.

It should be noted, however, that depending on the severity of an individual’s injury, they may not able to return back to their former full-time capacity and may still face reduced wages even after returning back fully into the workforce. Furthermore, days when an injured employee does not feel well enough or cannot meet their job requirements could result in a partial loss of pay for that day.

In light of such considerations, it is important for both employers and employees alike to understand the requirements surrounding working part-time while compensated by workers’ comp benefits.

Understanding the Requirements is the next important step in understanding the process of working part time while collecting workers’ comp.

Understanding the Requirements

When an employee is injured and cannot work, they may turn to state workers’ compensation laws to recover lost wages due to periods of disability. In many cases, the law allows an injured employee to work part-time while receiving compensation benefits. Part-time work provides the opportunity to maintain regular earning checks while gradually transitioning back into full-time work.

It is important to understand that each state regulates its own workers’ compensation offenses and the possibility of working part-time while collecting benefits varies depending on the individual case, employer size, and state law. Generally, however, part-time employment requires approval from the insurance company in charge of the claim before any form of payment takes place. The insurance adjuster, based upon medical evidence from a doctor, will review the injury to determine if a claimant has returned to pre-injury status or reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). This review will be used to calculate whether and how much compensation a worker should receive after returning to work.

The parties involved must also take into account the amount and type of time off taken by an injured employee when returning to part-time work. Depending on the state law, some jurisdictions offer additional benefits in situations where a person has returned to reduced hours such as vocational rehabilitation or job retraining programs. It is worth noting that if false information is provided in regards to working hours, employees can face penalties or even criminal charges.

Overall there is a lot to consider in understanding if you are eligible for workers’ compensation when working part-time or transitioning back into full-time labor. Before making any further steps it is important to consult your insurance carrier and carefully examine the state laws so that you can confidently move forward.

Lastly, there are certain strategies employers can implement with their hiring policies when addressing part-time workers compensations that allow them remain compliant with state laws without sacrificing their profits.

CONCLUSION: Now that we have discussed a comprehensive overview of understanding the requirements for being able to receive workers’ compensation when working part-time or after returning from disability leave, let us now go over our conclusion in the following section.


Deciding whether or not to work part-time while collecting worker’s compensation benefits can be a complex decision. Depending on a person’s situation, the choice to return on a part-time basis could be both beneficial and risky.

Although most states will allow a person to receive partial compensation payments while working part-time, it’s important to remember that these payment amounts are typically much lower than normal full benefits. In addition, a person must consider the potential risks of re-injury while they are still in the process of recovering from their injury.

Employers who believe an employee is capable of working may also challenge any attempt to claim full disability payments, so it’s important for individuals to weigh their options carefully before making any decisions about working during recuperation. Consulting with a trusted lawyer or other legal professional can help ensure that all questions and concerns related to this process are addressed before any decisions are made.

Ultimately, it’s important for injured workers and their families to fully understand the particulars of their state’s workers compensation system before attempting to combine part-time work with disability payments. A comprehension of these regulations is key in order to make an informed and wise decision that best fits each individual’s needs and circumstances.

Common Questions and Explanations

Are there any restrictions or time limits on collecting workers’ compensation benefits while working part-time?

Yes, there are restrictions and time limits on collecting workers’ compensation benefits while working part-time. In most cases, to receive these benefits you must show that you are unable to earn a similar wage to what you were earning prior to the injury or illness due to its effects. If you are able to work part-time, any earnings from this employment will be taken into consideration by the court when evaluating your case and may limit or reduce your benefit eligibility. Additionally, if your employer has modified your job duties or provided light duty work for you, the amount of time needed for recovery can be significantly shorter than originally anticipated. This could also reduce or limit your eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits.

What are the criteria for determining the level of compensation for a part-time worker?

The level of compensation for a part-time worker is based primarily on the individual’s wages before and during the injury. The amount of compensation awarded to a part-time worker may also be determined by the severity of the injuries and any specific losses suffered as a result of the workplace accident.

In most cases, part-time workers receive a settlement that is proportional to their base wages, with an adjustment made for any special circumstances or expenses due to the injury. This means that even though part-time workers may earn less in terms of wages, they are still eligible to receive a settlement in accordance with their average wages over time.

In order to determine the precise level of compensation for a part-time worker, it is important to consult an experienced lawyer who specializes in workers’ compensation law and who can help assess potential claims, calculate appropriate damages and negotiate with insurance companies.

What factors can qualify someone for workers’ compensation benefits?

The main factors that can qualify someone for workers’ compensation benefits are:

1. The employee has been injured or become ill while on the job

2. The injury or illness is directly attributable to their role as an employee

3. The injury was not caused by the employee’s own negligence or recklessness

4. The injury or illness caused the employee to be unable to work, either temporarily or permanently

5. The medical expenses related to the illness/injury were incurred as a result of working in that particular job

In certain cases, workers’ compensation benefits may also be provided if an employee developed an occupational disease due to their job, such as carpal tunnel syndrome from repetitive strain injuries. Generally, it must be shown that the conditions in the workplace were hazardous and led directly to the employee’s disability. Additionally, employees may receive benefits for mental health issues that were caused by extreme on-the-job stress or trauma if it resulted in them being unable to work.