Can My Employer Fire Me For Filing A Workers’ Comp Claim?
Many employees are afraid to file workers’ compensation claims because they think their employers will fire them. In reality, filing a workers’ compensation claim may be the best way to protect your job and your health if you’ve suffered a serious work injury.
At Marzzacco Niven & Associates, in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, you can turn to us for your workers’ compensation claim. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your concerns following a workplace injury. Founding attorney Katherine L. Niven served as chief counsel for the Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and was a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation judge.
Is My Job Safe If I File A Workers’ Compensation Claim?
Pennsylvania is an at-will employment state. As a general rule, unless you are in a union or have an employment contract, your employer can fire you for any reason-or for no reason. However, your employer cannot fire you for filing a workers’ compensation claim.
If you can prove that your employer fired you because you filed a workers’ compensation claim, you may be able to file a civil claim against your employer for wrongful termination.
You can, however, be fired for a number of reasons other than filing a workers’ comp claim. For example, your employer can fire you for willful misconduct or for refusing a light-duty job assignment.
What Can I Do To Protect My Job?
It’s important to seek legal advice and put your case in the hands of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible. We can keep you from taking actions that could result in the loss of your job and your benefits.
If you are eligible for the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), you should apply for medical leave. Doing so can protect your job for a period of time.
Will My Workers’ Compensation Benefits Stop If I Am Fired?
If you are fired for a reason that is not your fault while you are on work restrictions, you can continue to receive workers’ compensation benefits. However, if you are released with no restrictions, you could be fired and you would lose the right to receive benefits.