Things To Know Before Completing Your FCE Test

The workplace can be dangerous for you and your fellow employees. Nearly 125,000 employees suffered a nonfatal workplace injury in 2022 alone. 

If you suffered an injury on the job, you may be requested to submit to a functional capability evaluation (FCE). This physical test can be used to determine whether you are entitled to receive disability payments. You may also be asked to take an FCE if you attempt to return to work following a workplace accident. 

Because the results of these evaluations can affect your finances, it’s important to know what to expect when you are asked to complete an FCE. Keep these key considerations in mind before completing your FCE in Pennsylvania.

Refusing To Complete a FCE May Not Be Wise

The prospect of going before a medical evaluator and having them assess your fitness and functionality after a personal injury might feel overwhelming or unsettling to you. Know that although you can be requested to take an FCE, you cannot be forced to do so.

While you might not be able to be compelled to take an FCE against your will, not doing so can lead to a denial of benefits. Alternatively, if you are attempting to return to work, your employer may refuse to allow you to do so if you do not first complete an FCE. 

Your Evaluator Only Knows What You Tell Them

Your evaluator may know little about your overall medical history, how your injury happened, or the symptoms you experience at home. Consider preparing for your FCE by writing down the symptoms you have been experiencing. You can also describe their intensity and frequency to help the evaluator better understand your performance on the FCE.

Similarly, if you have any preexisting injuries, your evaluator may find that information helpful in reaching their conclusions. You may also be given a questionnaire before the test starts that asks you about your pain and present limitations. 

No matter how you communicate this and similar information to the evaluator, do so honestly and without either exaggerating your conditions or minimizing their impact.

The Tests Are Designed To Mimic Work Activities

An FCE is unlike a physical test you might have completed in high school or for the military. Instead, an FCE consists of a series of tests designed to mimic the activities you would be expected to perform during an average workday. 

These include both dynamic tests, in which you will be expected to exert energy, and static tests, where you will be standing still. Although your FCE may take up to four hours, you are typically given breaks during the evaluation.

The tests are designed to be performed with maximum effort. You should do your best, but do not overly strain yourself to the point of injury. If a movement becomes painful, you should let the evaluator know. Some pain can be expected during the FCE, but excessive pain is not the desired result. 

Preparation Is Key for Your FCE in Pennsylvania

There is no one way to prepare for the tests that will be administered during the FCE. As a result, it is in your best interests to take the test seriously and ensure you are prepared. 

Communicate with your evaluator during the exam so that they understand the broader picture of your health and the injury you sustained. These and other similar steps can help the evaluator honestly assess your present condition and limitations.

Seeking the advice of a Chambersburg personal injury lawyer before completing your FCE can also provide you with critical insight on how best to proceed.

If you need help with your case, please contact Marzzacco Niven & Associates at the nearest location to schedule a free consultation today:

Harrisburg Law Office
945 East Park Drive, Suite 103 Harrisburg, PA 17111
(717) 231-1640

York Law Office
2550 Kingston Road, Suite 210A York, PA 17401
(717) 995-8998

Wyomissing Law Office
833 N. Park Road, Suite 103, Room A Wyomissing, PA 19610
(717) 388-2325

Chambersburg Law Office
79 St. Paul Drive, Suite 1 Chambersburg, PA 17201
(717) 388-2378

Carlisle Law Office
354 Alexander Springs Road Carlisle, PA 17015
(717) 995-8732

Carbondale Law Office
30 Lincoln Avenue, Suite 101 Carbondale, PA 18407
(717) 995-8810

Lancaster Law Office
2173 Embassy Drive, Ste 123, Lancaster Pa 17603
(717) 616-2954

Lebanon Law Office
937 Willow Street, Suite D Lebanon, PA 17042-1140
(717) 995-8963