Moving to a different state is a personal decision for your wellbeing, and the insurance company shouldn’t stop paying the benefits because of it.
Workers’ compensation laws in Missouri are meant to help injured workers get better, and allow them to go back to work. However, for a lot of these people, that’s not an option.
More severe injuries or illnesses could potentially cause partial disabilities or long-lasting health issues that prevent workers from resuming their previous work activities. If their employer cannot accommodate their new condition, and there are no other employment opportunities on the horizon, then the worker may consider moving out of state.
But will that affect workers’ comp?
It Generally Should Not Affect Your Benefits
From a legal standpoint, there is no reason why you should lose workers’ comp benefits if you move out of state. Many injured workers are required to find a different job after a work injury, and their benefits do not stop when they change their employer. The benefits should continue to come your way as scheduled.
However, from a logistical perspective, it may be a bit difficult. For instance, a change in your address could potentially create a bureaucratic gap and temporarily affect your benefits. It’s why you should notify your insurance adjuster that you are moving well in advance.
Additionally, in Missouri, the law states your employer has the right to choose the doctor who will be treating you for work-related injuries or illness. Often times, they transfer this right to the insurance company. Even though you move to a state that does not have this rule, the one in Missouri, where the case was filed, generally still applies. If you move and start seeing a doctor of your choosing without clearing it with the insurance company or your employer first, then it’s possible for your benefits to stop for good.
Will the Insurance Company Push Back?
They should not. Moving to a different state is a personal decision for your wellbeing, and the insurance company shouldn’t stop paying the benefits because of it. However, there are some things you need to consider.
First, your injuries. If your treating doctor does not clear you to travel, and you move anyways, then the insurance company may legally stop paying the benefits because you did not respect the doctor’s recommendation. It’s best to check in with the doctor to see if you can travel, and if not, postpone the move until you are clear.
Second, the insurance company may feel more motivated to check up on you more. They will want to see if your condition still warrants the benefits, and they are known to hire investigators to spy on workers. As a result, be careful not to go against doctor’s recommendations even if you’re miles away from Missouri.
Speak With an Attorney
Moving to another state should not affect your benefits, but if you are getting pushback, speak with an experienced Missouri workers comp attorney to ensure your legal rights are protected. Give us a call 24/7 at (816) 399-3706 for a FREE case evaluation.