Worker's Compensation And Retaliation

Posted on: 5 November 2014

Have you filed a claim for worker's compensation benefits recently? Has your employer engaged in retaliatory behavior because of this? If so, it's very important that you protect yourself and find out what your rights are. This article will tell you how to identify retaliation and what you should do if it is happening to you.

Retaliatory Behavior

Worker's compensation laws were created to help the employee as well as the employer. However, there are employers who take a negative view of employees who avail themselves of worker's compensation benefits. They may even discriminate unfairly against an employee who files a worker's compensation claim.

In most states, there are laws that prevent workers from being treated wrongly due to taking advantage of worker's compensation benefits. If this happens, the employee may be able to bring a civil lawsuit against the employer in question.

The employee will need to show a link between their treatment and the worker's compensation claim they filed. The guidance of an attorney is usually required in this instance.

What Constitutes Retaliation?

Most people believe that retaliation only involves terminating an employee who uses worker's compensation. However, this isn't necessarily the case. Retaliation can come in many different forms.

Some examples of relation include:

  • Unfair demotion.
  • Unwarranted schedule changes.
  • Overly negative job reviews.
  • Pay cuts.
  • Unfair disciplinary action.

How To Protect Yourself

If your employer is discriminating against you, and you believe it's because you filed a worker's compensation claim, you must make sure you act appropriately. You will need to do everything you can to protect yourself.

The first thing you need to do is set up a meeting with your supervisor. If you don't trust your supervisor, go to HR instead.

This is where you're going to ask some questions. Find out the reasons your employer is engaging in their behavior. The last thing you want to do is bring civil action against the company you work for if there is a good reason for their behavior.

If there is no good reason for your employer's behavior, you should tell them that you feel like you are being retaliated against. Point out the fact that this behavior started shortly after you filed your worker's compensation claim. If you employer insists on continuing their behavior, you should build your case.

Build Your Case

Now that it's time to build your case, you need to gather evidence of retaliation. This means showing a link between your worker's compensation claim and your employer's actions.

Here's what you need to do:

  • Document all of the incidents of retaliation.
  • Take note of any witnesses.
  • Look back at any records or emails that show that you are performing at acceptable levels.

When you have obtained the evidence, you will file your lawsuit. Make sure you consult with an attorney who can guide you through the process. For more information, contact a firm such as Robinson & Kole.