Our Charlotte workers’ compensation attorneys at the Ramsay Law Firm, P.A. understand that when you are hurt on the job, you face several fears during your recovery. First, you are faced with the anxiety of filing a workers’ compensation claim, and the question of whether you will get paid while you are out of work.
Next, you must endure the stress of the unknown. Will your injuries fully heal? Will you be able to return to work in a lesser capacity? Will you even have a job to return to?
When you need surgery or have an injury that prevents you from returning to work, the fear of losing your job or your benefits is a constant worry.
Here is what North Carolina employees need to know about their rights.
Can I Lose My Job for Filing a North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Claim?
However, that does not mean it won’t happen.
Employers can make short-sighted decisions when facing a workers’ compensation claim and look for what they believe to be a legitimate reason for firing an employee while he or she is collecting benefits.
Common defenses employers use to validate an employee’s termination include allegations that the employee was consistently late for work, did not show up to work, or was not adequately performing their duties.
If the real reason for the termination was that the employee filed a workers’ compensation claim, then the employer is discriminating against or retaliating against the employee, and the injured worker may have a secondary legal claim under employment law.
What North Carolina Laws Protect Employees from Workers’ Compensation Retaliation and Discrimination?
Injured North Carolina workers are protected from being fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim by the Retaliatory Employment Discrimination Act, or REDA. We call these wrongful termination claims.
If you believe your employer is discriminating against you or retaliating against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim, you have the right to file a complaint to pursue damages.
Under REDA, workers must file a complaint with the North Carolina Department of Labor within 180 days of the discrimination asserting a REDA violation.
The employee may be eligible to recover:
- Lost Wages
- Treble Damages, which could measure up to three times the actual or compensatory damages
- Attorney’s fees and costs
If you have been injured or become ill due to an incident that took place at work, contact our skilled workers’ compensation attorneys in Charlotte today to learn more about your legal rights and options to pursue the best outcome for your unique claim.
Contact Our Dedicated Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Charlotte, North Carolina
Our dedicated workers’ compensation law firm provides free consultations to workers who have lost their jobs due to a North Carolina workplace accident by calling 704-376-1616 or contacting us online.
Our Board-Certified Workers’ Compensation attorneys and a skilled team of lawyers and support staff in Charlotte are here to manage each detail of your case. Ask Martha for Help Today.