Is Your Employer Retaliating?
If you have been seriously injured at work in North Carolina, you certainly don’t want the prospect of losing your job to add to all your other worries: your pain and suffering, medical treatment and rehabilitation, loss of wages and in some cases, the dreadful prospect of being impaired for life.
Do you think your employer retaliates because of your accidental injury claim?
Before you answer the question, it could be useful to clarify what “retaliation” means. Some employers may have an inbred prejudice against the cost of workers’ compensation insurance, some particular employees or what they like to call the “abusive exploitation of the system” by so-called lazy workers who keep earning wages while staying at home with fake injuries.
What can be considered retaliation?
According to the N.C. Department of Labor, retaliatory action is an action by the employer to negatively affect the terms, conditions, privileges or benefits of your employment. Some examples are:
- Demotion, reduction in wages
- Retaliatory relocation
If your employer does not allow you to be treated by your doctor, or refuses to put you in a different position than the one you held before the injury, those actions do not constitute retaliation. In these cases, you would however be able to file a petition to the North Carolina Industrial Commission to justify your request and try to obtain satisfaction. The best way to handle such a petition is to consult with our law office first, in order to make sure your petition succeeds.
What should you do if your employer threatens to or does retaliate?
You are protected by the Retaliatory Discrimination Employment Act and in order to file a suit under that act you must establish evidence that:
You had made a claim for or provided information related to a claim under the Workers’ Compensation Act;
- A retaliatory act was taken against you;
- The retaliatory action was prompted by your request for benefits.
The best way to handle return-to-work issues after a work accident is to ask for a free consultation with our office. You will then be fully informed about the procedure and the issues.
Contact Joe Miler Law in Elizabeth City, where attorney Joseph Miller, Esq has been representing injured North Carolina workers for over 20 years. Call us locally 757-455-8889 or toll-free 888-694-7994 or send us an e-mail for a FREE, no commitment discussion of your case.
Attorney Joseph Miller’s FREE book restores the truth about Workers’ Compensation in North Carolina. Download now: The Nine Biggest Myths About North Carolina Workplace Injuries, which answers all the questions you have about workplace injuries, claims and benefits.