Work place injuries can be devastating, as the stress of being injured is magnified by crushing medical bills combined with not being able to work while you heal. However, this stress is not necessary. If you are injured while performing the duties and responsibilities of your job, you are almost always entitled to compensation from your employer for the medical bills and lost wages that you suffered as a result of the injury. Yet, many employees will frequently refuse to file a worker’s compensation claim against their employer out of fear of being fired in retaliation.
To be clear, it is against the law to terminate an employee for filing a worker’s compensation claim. To do so would be considered discrimination against the employee and would be illegal. Though many states grant employers the right to hire and terminate employees as they please, all states make an exception to this rule for cases of discrimination. If an employer does retaliate by firing the employee after a workers compensation claim has been filed, they give the employee a path to file an entirely new type of lawsuit against the employer, the discrimination lawsuit, as well as the worker’s compensation lawsuit.
Especially in high risk jobs such as construction, it is absolutely crucial to file a worker’s compensation claim against the employer after an accident. Costs of medical bills can be far higher than expected even in minor injuries, and there is absolutely no reason for an employee who was fulfilling their duties when the injuries occurred to be forced to suffer the financial burdens as well as the physical ones. According to the law, these injuries are the responsibility of the employer, and employers should be held to their responsibilities.
Worker’s compensation laws are in place to protect workers, and no one should ever fear losing their job because they asked to be compensated for their injuries. With these protections in place, nothing good can come from failing to file a worker’s compensation claim.
After an on the job injury, it may be a good idea to speak with an experienced attorney to prepare the best worker’s compensation case that you can, as well as potential legal recourse if your employer has threatened your job should you file a worker’s compensation claim. A top personal injury attorney Atlanta GA has to offer is often more able to answer your questions surrounding an accident at the workplace. Your attorney will be able to determine the best route for you, and will be make sure that you are able to return to work without having to break the bank to heal.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Andrew R. Lynch, P.C. for their insights on workers’ compensation law.