Is It Illegal To Be Fired for Making a Workers' Comp Claim?
Most people in New York are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they get hurt on the job or develop an occupational illness. Unfortunately, some injured workers don’t seek the benefits they are entitled to because they are afraid they will get fired if they file a workers’ compensation claim.
It is illegal to fire an employee because he or she filed a workers’ compensation claim or testified before the Workers’ Compensation Board. If you have lost your job because you filed for workers’ comp or testified in a workers’ comp case, you could be entitled to significant monetary compensation.
The Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP’s wrongful termination lawyers help workers on Long Island and in the nearby areas who have lost their jobs because they sought workers’ compensation benefits. If you believe you have been the victim of retaliatory termination related to a workers’ comp claim, we want to hear your side of the story. We want to help you stand up to an employer who has violated your rights, and obtain appropriate compensation for the injustice you have suffered.
To find out more about your rights, call us now or fill out our online contact form for a free consultation and claim evaluation.
Retaliation and Workers’ Compensation in New York
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“Can I be fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim in New York?” That’s a legitimate question that many injured workers have after an on-the-job injury. The simple answer is, no, you cannot legally lose your job in retaliation for filing a workers’ compensation claim or testifying before the New York Workers’ Compensation Board, according to WCL §120.
New York law makes it clear that employers cannot terminate an employee simply because he or she filed for workers’ comp benefits. However, this does not stop some employers from firing a worker for this very reason.
Often, employers will claim that they have actually fired a worker for another legitimate reason. That’s because the law allows employers to fire workers’ compensation claimants for “valid business reasons” – so long as it is not actually in retaliation for filing for benefits. Examples of valid business reasons may include:
- Poor job performance
- Inability to perform the work
- Lengthy unexcused absences
- Economic conditions
- Lack of available work
An employer that has fired an employee for filing for workers’ compensation benefits may cite these or other reasons for the termination. This is often a ruse. The true reason the worker was let go is often because he or she exercised the right to claim benefits for a workplace injury.
This is when you need the help of an experienced Long Island wrongful termination lawyer like those at Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP. Our attorneys can fully investigate your situation to uncover the true reason for your firing. Under scrutiny from a skilled employment lawyer, the reasons claimed for firing a workers’ comp claimant are often revealed for what they really are – mere pretenses.
Most employers know that they cannot legally fire someone in retaliation for filing a workers’ compensation claim. Few employers will come out and say that was the reason they let a worker go. You should not simply take your employer’s reasons for your termination at face value. If you suspect the grounds your employer cited for your termination were a sham to cover up workers’ compensation retaliation, you should get help from a qualified employment attorney.
It is important to take action quickly if you suspect you have been wrongfully terminated in retaliation for filing a workers’ compensation claim. New York law generally requires a claim to be filed within two years after the wrongful action.
Fired for Filing a Workers’ Comp Claim? Talk to our Wrongful Termination Lawyers now
If you believe you lost your job because you filed for workers’ compensation benefits after a workplace accident on Long Island, a wrongful termination lawyer at the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP is here to help you. You may be entitled to compensation.
At Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP, we are advocates for workers who suffered unjust retaliation for exercising their right to claim workers’ compensation benefits. Our attorneys can see to it that your rights are protected and that you are compensated if you have been treated illegally. The wrongful termination lawyers at Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP will review your case and discuss the options for legal recourse during a free initial consultation.
Call us or fill out our online contact form to talk to an employment law attorney with Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP. We will respond to you immediately and aggressively pursue justice for you.