If you suffered an injury in the workplace, you have the right to file for workers' compensation benefits. Unfortunately, some employers resent this action and sometimes resort to retaliation against the employees who filed. If you believe that your employer is retaliating against you because of your application for disability benefits, here is what you need to know.
Can You Employer Retaliate?
Regardless of which state you live in, your employer does not have the right to retaliate against you for filing a workers' compensation claim. There are federal laws in place that are designed to prevent retaliation and punish employers who do.
What Can You Do?
Before you can take legal action against your employer, you need to contact your company's human resources department and determine what the procedure is for filing a complaint regarding retaliation. Once you know the procedure, you need to file a complaint with the company. Ensure that you have a copy of your complaint in case you do have to take action in the future.
In your complaint, be very specific. For instance, if you feel that you were passed over for a promotion because you filed for workers' compensation benefits, explain why. If you have witnesses that can offer testimony to support your statements, include their names in your complaint.
What If Nothing Happens?
In the event that the company fails to take action on your complaint, you can contact the state's labor department and file a complaint. The department will investigate your claims and make a determination.
It is important to be very detailed in your complaint. Include important dates, such as the date you filed for benefits and the date you noticed a chance in your employer's actions or mood towards you. As with your original complaint to your employer, you need to provide witness names and contact information to aid in the investigation.
Depending on your state, a hearing might be held to determine whether or not your claims have merit. During the hearing, both you and your employer have a chance to argue whether or not retaliation really did occur.
You also need to consult with an attorney. He or she can help determine if there is a possibility of collecting additional compensation from your employer for its actions. The state investigation will not result in compensation being rewarded to you, but it can result in changes to how your employer treats injured employees in the future.
You have the right to fight against retaliation from your employer. To ensure you fully understand the legal system and your rights, work with an attorney like those at the Law Offices Jonathan Teperson.Share