Investing in workplace safety is a key to controlling rising insurance costs. At Montana State Fund, we know that a safe working environment contributes to a business’s overall success and the well-being of its employees. That’s why we have committed ourselves to providing employers with the best safety services and information available. Preventing injuries from occurring is the primary goal; however, if an injury does occur, a Return to Work (RTW) program is an important tool to help control the cost of workers’ compensation claims, which in turn could lower your premium costs.

RTW Philosophy

A successful RTW program begins with the belief that employees are your most valuable assets. When an employee is injured, every attempt is made to bring that person back to work as soon as it is medically appropriate to do so.

MSF Can Help

The purpose of this website is to help you create a Return to Work program that’s just right for your company and your people.


Return to Work Program – A plan designed to facilitate the earliest possible return of an injured employee to the workplace to perform meaningful, productive work within the realm of their capabilities as outlined by their medical provider.

Modified Duty – The primary objective of an RTW program. The employee’s job duties or work schedule are temporarily modified to accomodate for the temporary physical restrictions identified by their medical provider.

Transitional Duty (Light Duty) – In some cases, the injured employee’s original job duties, with or without modification, are deemed too strenuous for their current medical condition. Having temporary transitional jobs available with alternative duties requiring minimal physical activity will assist the injured employee to remain productive while healing.

RTW Specialist – A person or team within an organization that is responsible for managing the Return to Work program. Depending on the size and nature of your organization, the RTW specialist may be a human resources professional, office manager, business owner, or a team such as a safety committee. Responsibilities of the RTW Specialist include:

  • Developing the company policy outlining the RTW program.
  • Developing responsibilities for each of the parties involved.
  • Updating job descriptions to include the physical requirements.
  • Identifying transitional jobs and creating associated job descriptions.
  • Leading efforts to inform employees.
  • Answering employee questions.
  • Working with an MSF claims examiner to devise an RTW plan for the injured employee.
  • Facilitating an injured employee’s return to work.
  • Providing regular updates to management on the RTW program and individual progress of each injured employee.

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