Being Injured At Work Does Not Justify Firing You
Throughout the United States, people are injured every day while working on-the-job. Jobsites are often extremely dangerous, particularly in fields of work like construction, labor and maintenance. Dangerous work sites create great risk to people working on those sites, those who can suffer catastrophic injuries or even fatality at work. If the worker survives his or her injuries, unemployment is often a significant problem for the injured party. Either the victim cannot go back to that particular job or they are unable to continue working in the same occupation, altogether.
Risk of unemployment is one reason why workers often avoid notifying their employers of injuries. Instead, they suffer the financial damages of the injury so they can go back to work at the facility, workplace or job site where that injury occurred.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits and Premises Liability Cases
Workers’ compensation benefits are usually available to people injured at work. But these benefits do have limits. These limits are all too often far less than the actual cost of the injuries. This is why you should talk to a personal injury lawyer immediately after your accident, to ensure you know your rights for filing a premises liability claim against your employer, to make up amounts not covered by workers’ compensation.
If you are working on a jobsite your employer does not own when your injury occurs, that third party owner of the property may be responsible for your injuries. This is often the case in construction work or other labor roles. The owner is responsible for maintaining the premises for safe use by those working on that property. This means that owner may be defendant in your premises liability claim if you are injured. If you do file a claim against the property owner, the case results are in addition to your workers’ compensation benefits, not taking the place of those needed funds.
When Injury at Work Causes You to Be Fired
Recent studies by Harvard University clearly indicate that people who report being injured at work are terminated twice as often as those who are injured and do not report their injuries to the company. The study focused on 1330 employees from thirty businesses. Injured workers were interviewed four times, once every six months after their injury.
In the study results, 30 percent of injured workers were terminated within six months following their injuries. Additional injuries on the same jobsite or for the same employer led many workers to voluntarily quit their job. The study also indicated there is an increased chance of being terminated after injury, than if no injury occurs
The Harvard study gathered data acquired from these interviews and made the following conclusions:
- Researchers believe that many fired workers were terminated because their injuries made them unable to perform the same job after being injured
- Many workers fear a second injury so much that they leave their job when the workplace is not improved to prevent injuries
- Filing for workers’ compensation and reporting injuries often leads to employee termination
- Premises liability insurance policy payments made by the company may be reduced if they do not have previously injured employees as a liability on their payroll
Legal Steps to Take after Your Workplace Injury
If you have been injured on-the-job, you should speak with a personal injury and premises liability lawyer as soon as possible after the incident occurs. You need to protect your rights and ensure you are paid all you are owed for your workplace injury. There are also other legal actions that you can take if your employment is terminated after a workplace injury.
Firing an employee after workplace injury is reported and compensated through workers’ compensation is a form of retaliation. You are legally protected by your injury claim and being fired is against regulations. When termination happens, you may be able to take legal action.
Whether a third party or your employer owns the work site, you should gain the help and guidance of a qualified premises liability and personal injury lawyer for your injury case. You should not be retaliated against and your lawyer can help you if your employer fires you after your injury.