Worker’s compensation is one of the most important protections granted to laborers in the US. The National Safety Council indicates that a worker is injured on the job every seven seconds.
Employees in many professions put themselves at risk every day, yet some employers still make workers feel threatened for filing for worker’s compensation if they’re injured at work.
Employer retaliation is a real risk employees face when seeking compensation for their injuries. Know some of the signs that an employer is retaliating against you, and learn what your options are for handling it.
Signs of retaliation
It might not be apparent at first that you’re the victim of workplace retaliation after filing for worker’s compensation. Some of the signs include:
- Random or unexpected shift reassignments, or sudden lack of scheduling flexibility
- Unannounced cuts to hours or wages
- Relocation for no apparent reason, either within your current location or to another company location
- Feeling ostracized or ignored, including a more difficult time accessing attention and resources
- Verbal abuse from your employer or management team
- A demotion or lower marks on employee assessments that you previously did well on
Some employers might attempt to claim business interests are the cause behind these changes. However, if they are sudden, isolated to you, and right on the heels of a worker’s compensation claim, you may be experiencing retaliation.
What are my options?
If you suspect retaliation, the first step you should take is to hire a lawyer who can represent your case. Begin documenting all instances of your suspicions, and file a formal complaint to HR. You can use this documentation as evidence in court if it’s necessary to file a lawsuit against your employer.
It’s difficult enough to live with an injury you received while doing your job. Feeling like you’re being retaliated against can increase your stress significantly. Talk to a lawyer today to protect your rights as a worker and personal wellbeing.