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Do I have a case for wrongful termination/discrimination, as well as a civil suit?

Worcester, MA |

I am seeking legal advice about whether or not I have a case for discrimination/wrongful termination and/or a civil suit against my former patient. I was a R.N. for Mass Dept. of Mental Health for 2 months (on probationary period still on orientation) working in an inpatient psych ward and was injured by one of my patients (broken ribs) and then put on workers comp and taken off after 1 shift back at work...had to call in due to pain the next day and was immediately terminated before i was able to reinstate my claim and have been waiting 5 months for my WC case. The patient was not being malicious when he broke my ribs, but it is known that i have the option of a civil suit...WHAT DO I DO!?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Best answer

    You may have a workers' comp retaliation claim. You should consult in person (as soon as possible) with a workers' comp attorney. Good luck.

    My answers to questions posted on AVVO are intended to provide general information only, and are not intended to be legal advice. Employment law issues typically require a careful case-by-case analysis. Consequently, if you feel that you need legal advice, I would encourage you to consult in person with an employment attorney in your area.


  2. This answer is based on my knowledge of CA law:

    Generally retaliation for filing a worker's compensation claim is compensable only under the labor code. As such there is no real claim for "wrongful termination" when you are fired for filing for worker's comp. At least in CA, the labor code generally specifies what damages are available when an employee is unlawfully terminated for filing a worker's compensation claim. Under some circumstances your injuries may qualify you as disabled. I have seen numerous successful cases where a worker was temporarily injured and able to claim that she/he was fired for disability discrimination. The laws here in CA are very protective of employees thus you will want to consult with an attorney before applying any novel approach to remedy your claims in MA.

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