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The Law Firm of Herb Santos, Jr
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TEN STEPS TO ENSURE THAT THE VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION PLAN IS VIABLE.

Conceptual photo about Vocational Rehabilitation with handwritten phrase.

One of the benefits available to injured workers in Nevada is vocational rehabilitation. This benefit comes into play when an injured worker is unable to return to the pre-injury job due to the industrial, permanent physical restrictions and the employer is unable to provide a permanent light duty job within those restrictions.  It is important to note, when evaluating a vocational program, that the primary obligation of a vocational rehabilitation counselor is to the injured employee. NRS 616C.547.

In Nevada, if the injured worker does not have “existing marketable skills,”  the plan must consist of a program which trains or educates the injured employee and provides job placement assistance. The counselor is required to develop a plan for a program of vocational rehabilitation.  The counselor is required to work with the insurer and the injured employee to develop a program that is compatible with the injured employee’s age, sex and physical condition. NRS 616C.555.

Under NRS 616C.585, a plan may include formal education only if:

(a) The priorities set forth in NRS 616C.530 for returning an injured employee to work are followed;

(b) The education is recommended by a plan for a program of vocational rehabilitation developed pursuant to NRS 616C.555; and

(c) A written proposal concerning the probable economic benefits to the employee and the necessity of the education is submitted to the insurer.

In order to evaluate whether the proposed plan is viable, you need to look at the following:

1.  Review the DOT description for the vocational goal.

2.  Confirm that the training meets the SVP range for the vocational goal.

3. Review the resources used by the vocational counselor.

4. Review the example jobs in the labor market analysis.

5. Confirm that the projected growth for the vocational goal in Nevada is positive.

6. Confirm that the GOE code of the vocational goal matches with the counselor’s injured worker’s interest analysis.

7. Does the strength rating for the vocational goal exceed the injured worker’s physical limitations?

8. Does the GED classifications for the vocational goal exceed the injured worker’s educational background?

9. Evaluate the plan to confirm that the skills learned will result in legitimate marketable skills which will lead to securing employment.

10. Make sure that the treating provider is aware of any concerns you or your client have regarding the physical requirements of the vocational goal or the training itself.

A vocational program cannot commence before the treating physician or chiropractor, or an examining physician or chiropractor determines that the injured employee is capable of safely participating in the program. NRS 616C.555(6).

These 10 steps should always be evaluated. They can be confusing, thus, if you are in this position, I strongly urge you to seek legal counsel to help you through the process.  You can reach me at my office at 775-323-5200 to schedule an appointment to discuss your workers’ compensation issues.

 

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cindi jenkins
cindi jenkins
February 3, 2023
Herb is one of very few CERTIFIED SPECIALISTS IN WORKERS COMP in the state of Nevada. He is ranked in the nations top 1% by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel. The American Institute of Trail Lawyers have distinguished him as the Litigator of the Year for 2023. Need I say more. He is a fierce lawyer who fights for his clients rights and compensation. He is knowledgeable and compassionate. I have utilized his services over the last several years and would not consider anyone else.
Lorelei Le Blanc
Lorelei Le Blanc
June 5, 2022
Always honest and helpful
Joey Walcomb
Joey Walcomb
August 24, 2021
Herb Santos Jr. is everything you could wish for in a lawyer and then some. I am in awe of how Mr. Santos conducts himself in the court room also, he is a master of his craft. Mr. Santos and his team are a remarkable bunch. They have helped me through my complicated workers comp case, and have gone above and beyond what I could ever dreamed is possible. I can not recommend Mr. Santos and his team enough. They are prompt, professional and really listen to me. His fees are acceptable for the amount of work he does and he also has not cost me anything out of pocket. No one should go into the court room alone, so why not go with the best of the best.
Neil Walker
Neil Walker
August 23, 2021
Friendly and very well represent able I would definitely recommend them to anyone
Kyle Jacobs
Kyle Jacobs
August 12, 2021
I HIGHLY recommend Mr. Santos if you ever find yourself in a workers comp situation. He was able to answer any question I ever had. Mr. Santos and his office made sure I got everything I needed and was on top of everything when something went wrong.

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