Visitor Question

Can my boss prevent me from working with crutches?

Submitted By: Oklahoma (Oklahoma)

I hurt my left ankle a week ago outside of work. I am now in a air-cast and crutches. I have no insurance so everything is coming out of my pocket. So far, I’ve paid over $1,000 in medical bills and have $300 in lost wages due to my employer refusing to let me work on crutches.

Can my boss prevent me from working even though I have a doctor’s note clearing me to work with crutches? Is there anything I can do about this? Thanks.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Oklahoma,

It all depends on the nature of your employment. If you are employed under a written contract of employment then read the agreement thoroughly. See if there are any references to employees’ rights.

If in the alternative you were not working under a contract of employment at the time of your injury and you work for a sole proprietor or small business, it may be perfectly legal for your employer to make up the rules as she goes along.

When a business is owned or managed by a person and that person is trying to make a profit, she has the right to run the business as she sees fit. If she thinks you can’t be effective at work, or that your injury might be aggravated by your work, then she is making a business decision and the decision is hers to make, not yours.

There aren’t any laws in the State of Oklahoma which compel a small business owner to permit injured employees to work if the owner or manager of the business decides the employee will not be effective or may be dangerous to themselves or others.

Regrettably it appears you don’t have much of a case.

Learn more here: Returning to Work After Injury

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney.

Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call 888-972-0892.

We wish you the best with your claim,


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