Posted By Sirmabekian
If you were injured in your workplace or developed health issues because of your work, you are entitled to claim workers’ compensation. The compensation is meant to help supplement any loss of income and medical expenses incurred due to the injury. However, you may notice your employer acting differently before or after you file for workers’ compensation. If you think that your employer is purposely pressuring you to not file for compensation, or punishing you because you claimed compensation, you are likely dealing with workers compensation retaliation.
What is Workers’ Compensation Retaliation?
Workplace retaliation happens when employees are punished by employers for engaging in legally protected activities like filing for workers’ compensation. Under California Labor Code 132a, it is illegal to discriminate against employees and injured workers for filing workers’ compensation claims. Both federal and state law do not allow employers to display retaliatory actions against their employees. However, some employers continue to retaliate as they do not want to pay for the claims, or do not want their insurance rates to be affected, showing a complete disregard for the law.
Workers’ compensation retaliation comes in many shapes and forms. Some retaliatory actions are obvious, such as firing or demoting an employee after they file a claim. Other actions are less straightforward but equally damaging, for example:
- Verbal harassment
- Giving poor performance reviews
- Transferring employee to less desirable position
- Switching employee’s shift to an inconvenient timing
- Threatening to report an employee’s relative to immigration
What Actions Can I Take?
If you believe that you are a victim of workers’ compensation retaliation, the most important thing to keep in mind is to record as much evidence of retaliation as possible. This will be immensely helpful in building a legal case against your employers or when confronting them about their actions. Note down the ways in which your employer is harassing or discriminating against you and save evidence that can contradict your employer’s poor performance reviews or other negative claims about your abilities and behavior.
Consider Talking to Your Company
If your company has a human resources department or a supervisor, you can consider letting them know about your experiences. In the event that they are unable to provide a legitimate reason for the negative actions against you, then your employer is likely retaliating. If your employer continues to display such behavior even after you have raised the issue with them, then you may need to take the legal route to hold them accountable for their retaliatory actions. Throughout this process, try to keep copies of written documents or reports.
Should I File a Lawsuit Against My Employer?
Employment lawyers that specialize in workers’ compensation retaliation can advise you on your legal rights and whether you should pursue a court case against unfair workplace treatment. This is often the last resort left to protect your labor rights and hold your employer accountable for their illegal actions.
Regardless of how big or small the company is, Sirmabekian Law Firm is committed to helping you resolve your workers’ compensation retaliation issues. We are not only passionate and dedicated to advocating for your rights, but we also have the experience and skills to ensure the best results for you.