Imagine that you’re sitting at home recuperating from a nasty fall
that took place while you were on the job. You decide to call your employer’s
Human Resources Director to ask about receiving compensation to cover
your prescription meds and she curtly tells you that it’s not in
your best interest to file a
Worker's Comp claim. Then she goes on the make veiled threats indicating that anyone who has
ever filed one against the company in the past has ended up in the unemployment
line. When you finally hang up the phone, you wonder what your options are now.
Sadly, scenarios like the one we just described happen to good Americans
every year. For concrete proof, one only has to look at the U.S. Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission’s Annual Enforcement and Litigation
Data. In the last few years, it has consistently shown that a disturbing
number of hard working individuals find themselves victims of employer
retaliation in Worker's Comp cases. In just
FY 2013 alone, far more than 38,000 people tragically found themselves involved
in such scenarios and that figure only includes people that actually went
so far as to file a claim.
Many people, upon having conversations like the one we talked about earlier,
assume that the amount of compensation they’d receive by keeping
their jobs far outweighs what they’d get by filing a Worker’s
Compensation claim. So they just stay silent, never realizing that employers
may retaliate against them in other financially damaging ways. Based on
interpretation of the law as it stands now, examples include things like
threatening to cut the employee’s hours, significantly changing
his or her job description without justifiable cause and purposely withholding
benefits in an effort to coerce the victim into behaving in a desirable way.
With that said, it is important for people to know that they don’t
have to remain victims of employer retaliation in Worker’s Comp
cases. Depending on their unique circumstances, there may be one or more
legal recourses available to them. To continue this discussion and find
out more, please reach out and
contact us today.