Unfortunately, this is a situation that occurs all too often. Under Minnesota law there is no absolute right for an employer to provide light-duty work. However, the law prohibits employers from discriminating or retaliating against an injured worker who has suffered an injury or filed for workers compensation benefits.
Employers are required to make reasonable efforts to find acceptable positions for injured workers. This does not mean that the employer has to change their business practices. The question is whether the employer can make the necessary modifications without impacting the core duties of the employees job, the expense of those modifications and the difficulties that maybe caused by having to reassign job duties to other workers.
If the employer is unable to make a reasonable accommodation, you may be entitled to wage loss benefits. The type of benefits that may be available to you depends on where you are at in your case. Moreover, you may be entitled to rehabilitation services to help assist you in finding alternative employment.
If you find yourself in this type of situation it is important to contact a lawyer to go over your various options. You will want to discuss what type of benefits are available to you including wage loss, rehabilitation, retraining and medical.