I am a plumber and fractured my hand while drilling at work, my employer didn't file workers comp claim till a week and a half later , then my employers workers comp insurance gave me a very hard to time and only paid me two times In two and a half months I was off and they still owe me. I was released by my doctor to return to full capacity. On October 25 and my boss told me I messed up because retained a lawyer now he said work is slow and he would call me in a. Couple of days and today is November 15,2016 and he still has not call me to return to w
Talk to your lawyer about this right away. Labor Code 132a says that an employer cannot punish you for getting hurt on the job, seeking your benefits or hiring a lawyer. Your lawyer will know what to do about this.
You should talk to your attorney right away. Since he/she knows your case best they will be the one who can adequately advise you. There may be ramifications against your employer if it can be proven that they are discriminating against you because you filed a work comp claim.
You have a Workers' Compensation lawyer. many lawyers do not represent Applicants for 132A because there is a lot more work for very little payoff for the attorney. You have to have actual evidence of the intent to discriminate based on filing a claim. And if it is medical-related that is a good faith business decision. Make a physical appointment to talk to your lawyer.
The above statement should not be construed as legal advice, does not create an attorney-client relationship, and is provided purely for informational purposes. You are advised to seek legal advice from an attorney and NOT AN UNLICENSED PARALEGAL SERVICE for any legal questions you have.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO? APPLY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE AT WWW.EDD.CA.GOV immediately. Your 'termination' date is the date that the doctor released you to full duty and boss said not today, maybe later ("oct 25?)... THAT comes out of the employer's pocket, so he will find work for you lickety-split. It does not matter that the boss has not actually 'terminated' you. Refusal to let you return to work is the same as termination. Refusal to let you work the same hours is treated like a termination too.... UI covers losses in hours as well as a total loss of the job.
In addition, your lawyer should file a Petition for increased benefits per Labor Code 132 (as noted above) .... LC132a says an injured worker cannot be treated differently just because he requested workers comp benefits. That goes directly to the boss, he has no insurance for a 132a violation (it's a misdemeanor crime). I HAVE SUCCESSWITH THIS: I send a copy of the LC132a Petition to the boss with a letter that says if my client does not return to full duty and full salary with lost back wages in 6 days, on the 7th day I flle the petition. This gives the owner a chance to get you back to work without further fighting and losses
I agree with my colleagues here. The only thing I would add is that there is a difference between being released to full duty but have not reached medical maximum improvement AND released to full duty but NOT MMI. You should talk to your attorney about your medical status right away. Because if not MMI and there is no work, you will qualify for additional temporary disability benefits. If you are MMI, you need to talk to your attorney about the next step in resolving your case if it's ready. Good luck.
Ben H. Nakatani, Jr., Esq. is licensed in the State of California. All answers provided, regardless of jurisdiction, should be construed as "informational" only and not legal advice without a complete review of your case due to the limited facts presented. No representations or guarantees are made by any answer. Replying to a question does not create an attorney/client relationship. Replies are based upon "general" Workers' Compensation principles or laws which are subject to change or modification by reforms or caselaw and differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Consulting with an attorney to discuss all facts and current status of the law in your State is recommended.
Your workers' compensation attorney will know an employment attorney to refer you to. You will need to discuss with an employment attorney if your rights under FEHA are being violated.
In the meantime, you can apply for unemployment benefits from EDD.
The answers were all helpful. I thought Attorney Nancy Wallace's answer was particularly good. I agree.
You should contact your attorney ASAP because your employer CANNOT discriminate against you merely for filing a workers' compensation claim. That would be illegal under a statute called Labor Code section 132a that your attorney may want to file if it continues to appear that your employer is discriminating against you.
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