Montana Code Annotated 2014

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     39-71-1043. Rehabilitation provider -- evaluation. (1) Stay-at-work/return-to-work assistance must be provided by a rehabilitation provider pursuant to this section if:
     (a) the department provides assistance; or
     (b) an insurer elects to designate a rehabilitation provider instead of using the insurer's own stay-at-work/return-to-work assistance policy.
     (2) (a) The rehabilitation provider shall evaluate and determine the stay-at-work/return-to-work capabilities of the worker pursuant to the stay-at-work/return-to-work goals listed in 39-71-1041.
     (b) If the worker has returned to work, the rehabilitation provider shall provide documentation of the assistance to the worker, the insurer, and the department.
     (c) If the worker has not returned to work and has not received a job offer to return to work, the rehabilitation provider shall document the reasons the stay-at-work/return-to- work assistance was unsuccessful. The documentation must be provided to the worker, the insurer, the treating physician, and the department.
     (d) The following conditions allow termination of assistance prior to the time a worker meets the definition of a disabled worker:
     (i) the worker has returned to work earning wages that are at least as much as at the time of injury;
     (ii) the worker has received an offer to return to work at a position that is within the worker's physical abilities, for which the worker is qualified, and for which the wages are at least equal to the worker's wages at the time of injury;
     (iii) the worker has returned to work in an alternative position that pays less than the worker's wages at the time of injury and that qualifies the worker for temporary partial disability benefits pursuant to 39-71-712; or
     (iv) the worker receives a job offer to return to work in a position that is within the worker's physical abilities, for which the worker is qualified, for which the wages are less than the worker's wages at the time of injury, and that qualifies the worker for temporary partial disability benefits under 39-71-712.
     (e) If a worker has requested stay-at-work/return-to-work assistance and a rehabilitation plan has been agreed to by the worker and the insurer, the plan continues until completed.
     (3) If the worker or insurer disputes the availability or level of assistance, the worker or insurer may, after mediation, petition the workers' compensation court for resolution of the dispute.

     History: En. Sec. 18, Ch. 167, L. 2011.

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