Every month, a reader asks one of our sponsor legal experts about a work-related issue. These building trades law professionals respond in an Organized Labor exclusive. This month’s expert is Jonathan Davis of the Arns Law Firm. Ask Jonathan a question at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Visit The Arns Law Firm website.

I have a workers' compensation claim and was given work restrictions and my employer offered me modified duty. Do I have to show up?

Yes – if your employer offers you modified duty, you are generally required to show up and attempt to work, or risk losing your workers' compensation money benefits. Your employer is still required to pay your full wage and benefits package while on modified duty. A failure to respond to your employer's offer allows your employer to terminate you for job abandonment. If this happens, the workers' compensation insurance company can deny paying you benefits claiming you were terminated "for cause." Sometimes employers give workers on modified duty embarrassing tasks or write ups for minor issues. Do not give your employer any reason to terminate you "for cause." Modified duty may sound like a good deal but can easily become confusing and lead to a situation where your workers' compensation benefits are reduced or cut-off. You should always consult a competent workers' compensation attorney to fully understand your rights and obligations.

-Jonathan Davis, Founder of The Arns Law Firm, San Francisco, CA
Ask Jonathan a question at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more information on work-site accidents and
your legal options, visit the ARNS Website.

“Interaction via “Ask the Expert” does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Any advice given is neither legal advice nor does it serve as a replacement for hiring an attorney. In addition, any case results mentioned or discussed are not guarantees of similar results.”

Jonathan Davis

This Month's Expert; Jonathan Davis

Jonathan has dedicated his working life to representing working people. Prior to becoming an attorney, he was an International Representative and National Field Director for the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union. After representing workers in arbitrations throughout the West, Jonathan joined The Arns Law Firm and dedicates himself to representing injured workers and their families devastated by catastrophic injuries as well wage and hour and consumer class actions. Jonathan is bilingual in Spanish and is past Chairman of the non-profit affordable housing organization the African American Construction Workers Association (AACWA). Jonathan currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Local 261 Community Service and Training Foundation and is a former member of the Board of Governors of the Consumer Attorneys of California.

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