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Defining vocational rehab

After having been injured in a boating or maritime accident on Manhattan’s docks or out the on the open water, your ultimate goal will likely be to return to work. Sadly, several of the clients that we here at Tabak, Mellusi & Shisha LLP have worked with in the past have found that to be impossible. After all of the time you have dedicated to your career up to this point (coupled with the new physical limitations that now prevent you from returning to it), you may believe a career change to be impossible. However, there are resources available to help make that happen. 

Vocational rehabilitation is designed specifically to help people in your situation adapt their skill sets to better accommodate their new physical or mental disabilities. The ultimate goal of such rehab is to help you secure gainful employment in a position that pays you equal or near the salary you earned prior to your injury. Vocational rehab programs include elements such as career counseling, skills and aptitudes assessments, as well as job training and coaching. Once you have completed training, many programs will work with you to help place you in a new job (even up to working with your new employer to ensure necessary accommodations are made to help bolster your success). 

According to the U.S Department of Labor, vocational rehabilitation is a benefit you are entitled to through The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act. To qualify, you simply need to be: 

  • Receiving (or set to receive) compensation payments due to a work-related disability 
  • Unable to return to your previous job
  • Capable of working another job in your commuting area

More information on the benefits available through the Longshore Act can be found by continuing to explore our site. 

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