This content is for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide legal advice.
Following a work-related injury, an employee has the right to seek a work injury claim and receive compensation. So, most of the time, this is what employees do, particularly if the injury they suffered is pretty severe and requires medical attention. Unfortunately, in some cases, employers are not happy with this, and they completely shift their behavior towards the injured employees, and even start to discriminate against them.
The workplace suddenly becomes a toxic environment, and the employee will want to avoid it as much as possible. They may even end up having a worse performance because of the discrimination.
Of course, not all employers will discriminate after work injury claims. The relationship remains the same in most situations. Still, if you find yourself in an unpleasant scenario and your boss treats you badly after the injury claim, it’s important to know there are some things you can do.
How Do Employers Discriminate Workers After Injury Claims?
After getting injured at work, an employee will have to deal with many things. They have to get medical help, but also seek an injury attorney who can help them with the case. On top of that, there is probably a lot of pain as a result of the injury, which makes it hard to do certain things and focus on tasks.
But what would make this even worse is the employer starting to discriminate against the worker. If an employer discriminates against you, then you will easily notice. The behavior will change, and the atmosphere at work will soon be filled with negativity.
Some of the most common ways in which employers discriminate against workers who filed a work injury claim are:
- Not doing anything to adjust the needs of the employee that was injured in the workplace
- Harassing or bullying the worker because he/she filed for the work injury claim seeking compensation
- The employer is not taking steps to promote the employee because of the injury or disability they are now dealing with
- The employer is treating the employee unfairly and badly because of the injury that happened at work
- The employer is wrongfully firing the employee following the work injury claim
These are only a few examples, but there may also be other ways in which an employer may discriminate against an employee. If you feel like you are a victim of discrimination at work following a work injury claim, you should tell your employer about it. If they deny it, you should take action in other ways.
What Are the Options for Federal Employees?
If you’re a federal employee, then you should know that it is illegal to be discriminated against as a result of an injury or disability. Following any work-related injury, federal employers should make sure to accommodate the workplace accordingly.
They need to make sure that the employee who got injured or has a disability can work in good conditions. The only exception would be if making these accommodations is too expensive or difficult.
When they discriminate against the employee in any way, federal employers will have to face consequences, and workers may even receive compensation.
What Can You Do If You Experience Work-Related Injury Discrimination?
If you’re convinced that what you are dealing with is discrimination as a result of a work-related injury, you need to know what to do next.
First of all, if the employer is doing or saying anything discriminatory, you should make sure you don’t say something that can be easily misconstrued in court. Even if you’re understandably angry at what is happening, you should stay calm and make sure you don’t say anything bad. Otherwise, this could be used against you later.
Besides this, there are several other things you can do.
- Talk to an Attorney – Consulting an attorney regarding the matter is the most important step. You should find a good attorney that will focus on your case and seek justice.
- Gather the Proof – You may be asked to bring as much documentation about the situation as possible. This might be proof of the discrimination in any form, whether it’s a video, photo, or anything else. If any co-worker is a witness, you should use this to your advantage.
- Seek a Lawsuit – Under the Fair Employment Housing Act, you can seek a lawsuit for general discrimination against an employee. If you do this, it is possible that your case will go on the forum for worker’s compensation, which means you may receive up to 50% higher compensation, or in some situations even higher than that.
A lawsuit could have a happy end if you can prove the discrimination. Let’s take an example. Paul was a warehouse worker in Vancouver. He was at work one day and had to deal with several challenging tasks. In the meantime, other workers were focusing on their own work. Someone managed to spill water on the floor, with a few workers except Paul noticing it. The employer was there as well, walking around and giving people indications. One of the workers saw that the employer noticed the water on the floor, but ignored it and rushed to another place, continuing his tasks.
Not long after, Paul happened to walk on the wet, slippery floor. Not knowing about it, he slipped and fell, and broke his arm. He mentioned seeking workers’ compensation for the injury, after which the employee’s behavior towards him completely changed. He started bullying Paul and did nothing to ease his work following the injury. A few co-workers noticed this. Paul contacted a Vancouver personal injury attorney, gathered all the necessary proof, and took the co-workers that were nearby as witnesses. He won the case and received even higher compensation for his injury because of the discrimination.
If you’re being discriminated against after getting injured at work or after seeking compensation, you should take legal action. The employer has no right to discriminate against you, and you can get a high compensation if you can prove the employer didn’t treat you right. Make sure to seek the help of a good attorney and gather enough proof for the lawsuit.