If you get hurt on the job, you have the right to claim workers’ compensation. This can cost your employer money, and some bosses resent that. They may try to intimidate you into not filing your claim or punish you after you do so.
The term for this is employer retaliation. It is against the law, and you can take action against it to get your employer to stop.
How do you know if your employer is retaliating against you?
Retaliation techniques can be very subtle. It is sometimes hard to tell that the behavior is in response to your work comp claim. If your employer suddenly starts behaving more negatively toward you after filing, there is a good chance the behavior is retaliatory.
It is also a clue if your employer seems to purposely flout the restrictions your doctor placed on you after your work injury. For example, your employer may call you back into work before your recovery is complete or assign you duties that your doctor tells you not to do.
However, retaliation does not have to relate directly to your injury. Your boss may dock your pay, cut your hours or evaluate your performance less favorably, all with seemingly no justification. He or she may intentionally interfere with your work or spread rumors about you to your co-workers.
What can you do about employer retaliation?
You can report the retaliation and file a claim against your employer. There is a time limit in which to do this, so it is in your interest to act as soon as you have reason to believe that your boss is retaliating against your work comp claim.