You may have legal recourse against your previous employer if you were fired soon after suffering an on-the-job accident. Workers’ compensation system is meant to handle these kinds of injuries in most cases. Through this system, employees may get back some of the money they spend on things like rent, medical bills and food while they’re out of employment. Unfortunately, there are some employers that take a negative view of this and take action against their employees who use it. It would be retaliation if the Employer does this, and it’s against the law.
Oregon’s Anti-Retaliation Law for Oregon Workers’ Compensation
The primary law that governs the prohibition of employer retaliation is 659A.040 of the Oregon Revised Statutes. The law provides limited safeguards for employees of businesses with six or more employees. The law makes it clear that employers are prohibited from using workers’ compensation status as a basis for hiring or promoting decisions. Accordingly, you should know that your present employer cannot penalize you in any way, including demotion and termination, because you have filed a workers’ compensation claim. Further, you should also know that a former worker’s compensation claim cannot be used as a basis for future discrimination by a prospective employer.
Firstly, the law states that if you file a workers’ compensation claim, your employer cannot treat you differently in any way related to your job. This implies that your employer is prohibited from penalizing you in any way for making such a claim. It cannot be used as an excuse to pay you less than you normally would earn, and it cannot be used as a pretext to change your other benefits of employment.
Secondly, the law states that an employee who testifies in a workers’ compensation case cannot be discriminated against or be terminated as a result of their participation in the proceeding. To illustrate this point, if you were not the injured worker, but rather a witness to a workplace injury involving a co-worker. A worker on your team has filed a workers’ compensation claim, and the case has reached the court. Since you observed the accident, you were called as a witness to testify about what you saw. Even if your testimony is detrimental to the company, your employer is not allowed to penalize you for participating in the case. You are protected from retaliation in the same manner the wounded worker is protected. So, let’s say your boss got harmed on the job, and because of your testimony, your boss didn’t get workers’ compensation. Again, he or she could not terminate you or otherwise retaliate against you because of your testimony. Witnesses are more likely to testify honestly without worrying for their own careers when such protections are in place, and victims of retaliation have a legal recourse should they suffer any harm as a result of testifying.
You have a right to file for an Oregon Workers’ Compensation Claim as an employee. If you have suffered from employer retaliation as a result of you filing an Oregon Workers’ Compensation Claim, you can contact our experienced Oregon Workers’ Compensation Claim attorneys at Aldrich Legal here.