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Ohio BWC: I’ve got Injured, Quit my Job, and move to another State do I still get Compensation?


Orange Umbrella and blue chairs on beach

Klein v. Precision Excavating:

The short answer is no. In Klein the injured worker was certified temporarily and totally disabled by his doctor. Prior to his work injury he was thinking about quitting and moving to Florida. Unfortunately life likes to throw curve balls. And he got injured at work. A couple of weeks after his work injury, he in fact moved to Florida. The injured worker requested temporary total compensation. The Industrial Commission award temporary total only up the date right before he left to Florida.

Injured worker appealled to the 10th District Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals said “hey if you had a work injury and were unable to work at the time you moved, then you get money.” Employer appealed to the Ohio Supreme Court. Ohio Supreme Court said, “nah, even though case law says that you should get money, we’re saying you shouldn’t so you don’t get money. Hey man, even though you were unable to work at the time you moved, and maybe you are still injured has no bearing to why you are no longer worker at Precision Excavating. You VOLUNTARILY ABANDONED the workforce. Your leaving the job had no connection to the work injury”

Here’s the thing, it is true. The injured worker was planning on leaving prior to his work injury. But he got injured. Case law that was previously followed basically said that if you were unable to do the essential functions of your job at the time of the event that separated you from your job then you cannot be found to have VOLUNTARILY ABDANDONED your job because you had already INVOLUNTARILY ABANDONED your job.

Anyways. Not the case now. So if you quit or resign after a work injury, even though you are certified temporarily and totally disabled, you may be found to have voluntarily abandoned your job and not be entitled to compensation.