On occasion - not often by any means, but from time to time - an employer might seem to go out of its way to make life harder for an employee who was injured on the job.
Connecticut's Workers' Compensation Act gives employees a right of action (a.k.a. the right to file a civil lawsuit or bring a complaint to the chair of the Workers' Compensation Commission) against an employer who terminates the employee's job or otherwise discriminates against the employee because he or she filed a claim for workers' comp.
Assuming the employee proves his or her claim of termination or discrimination based on filing a workers' comp claim or exercising any rights under the Act, the law allows for:
- Job reinstatement
- Back wages
- Benefits reinstatement
- The possibility of punitive damages
- Reasonable attorney's fees
The "punishment" for employers who break the rules can be substantial (though by no means is it guaranteed, as every case and situation is different). Following a back injury in 2008, a facility supervisor for frozen food distributor Schwan's was awarded punitive and compensatory damages of $4.3M, after the company stopped paying the employee wages, failed to make good on full workers' comp benefits, and ultimately terminated the employee's position.
Such a massive amount of damages in workers' comp retaliation cases is rare but not unheard of.
The point of it is to hold companies accountable to what essentially amounts to wrongdoing.
Call Cousins, Desrosiers & Morizio, P.C. Today
If you've been injured in an accident in the workplace or on the job site, call us at 866-225-9496 today. And if your employer is giving you trouble because you've filed a workers' comp claim ... that's even more reason to call.