How can we prevent a workers’ comp claim from an older, accident-prone employee? — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

How can we prevent a workers’ comp claim from an older, accident-prone employee?

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

Q. One of our employees is over age 70 and has had a broken foot, memory problems and a recent car wreck that caused some residual problems. Should we allow him to work? What can we do to protect ourselves from potential workers’ comp claims should he injure himself?

A. You need to be careful about making any decision based on assumptions about this employee’s age. You also have to refrain from taking any action based on a concern that the employee might have a workers’ comp claim down the road.

If you have evidence that his performance is suffering, you can have a discussion with him about where he is falling short. If you have a reasonable basis for believing that he has medical issues that are interfering with his ability to perform his job duties, you can ask him to provide information from his doctor certifying that he is able to perform his job.

You should tread carefully, however, and consult your attorney before requesting medical information.

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