Employer Retaliation in Lakewood Workers’ Comp Cases
When an employee is injured on the job, they may file for workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits provide the injured employee with a portion of their regular income until they are well enough to work again. Filing a claim is fairly simple, but in reality, some employers choose to retaliate against injured employees once they file a claim for benefits.
Companies often hate to pay compensation to injured employees, and they often discourage employees from doing so. Employer attempts to save money may hurt employees, but often, they do not care. Fortunately, it is illegal to engage in retaliatory behavior against an employee if they choose to file a claim. Before contacting an experienced attorney, learn more about employer retaliation in Lakewood workers’ comp cases.
Common Forms of Employer Retaliation in Lakewood
Angry employers can retaliate against injured employees in a variety of ways. Although employees have the right to file claims in the wake of an on-the-job injury, they may be retaliated against in the following ways:
- Demotion – When an employee is unfairly demoted, they are forced to take a lower-level position for no rational reason. For example, if a supervisor is forced to become a run-of-the-mill worker, they have been demoted. Employers may also attempt to dock the pay of a worker without providing an explanation
- Termination – As its name implies, occurs when an employee is fired or told their services are no longer needed
- Discrimination – If an injured employee is treated differently than other employees after filing a workers’ compensation claim, they are experiencing discrimination
- Harassment – Purposely mistreating an employee, making derogatory remarks towards an employee, or threatening an employee are all common forms of on-the-job harassment
All of the forms of retaliation mentioned above are illegal in all states. Injured employees should be able to file a claim for compensation without fear of losing their jobs.
How Can an Employee Prove They Are Being Retaliated Against?
Proving that an employer is engaging in retaliatory behavior is often easier said than done. It is likely that an injured employee would need help from an attorney who understands employer retaliation in Lakewood workers’ comp cases. Firstly, employees must prove they were entitled to benefits under the workers’ compensation laws in their state. They must also show they filed a claim for compensation and notified their employer of their injury.
If an employee can show they filed a claim, they must then show they suffered an adverse employment action, such as demotion, a reduction in pay, or open harassment. Finally, an employee must show the actions of their employer was motivated by their filing of a workers’ compensation claim.
This could be difficult to prove without an attorney, especially considering an employer may assert the performance of the employee resulted in the adverse employment action. If they do this, the injured employee may not be granted benefits.
When Should an Employee File a Retaliation Claim?
Ideally, an employee should file a retaliation claim as soon as they become aware of the retaliation. Workers may need to wait a few weeks or months, but once the claim is received, it would be investigated. If the claim is found to be valid, the employer and those who instigated the retaliation may face punitive measures from the appropriate agency.
Discuss Employer Retaliation in Lakewood Workers’ Comp Claims with an Attorney
If you believe your employer is retaliating against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim, you may have legal options at your disposal. Employers should never behave in such a negative manner, especially when an injured employee simply chooses to exercise their state and federal rights.
Call an attorney today to discuss employer retaliation in Lakewood workers’ comp cases.