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Handling employer retaliation after filing for workers’ comp

On Behalf of | Jul 28, 2023 | Workers' Compensation

Experiencing an injury on the job can be a stressful and challenging situation. Workers’ compensation insurance exists to help cover your medical expenses and lost wages. However, what if your Pennsylvania employer retaliates after you apply for workers’ compensation? Workplace retaliation is so common that the EEOC reports that workplace retaliation complaints make up almost 60% of all discrimination complaints filed with them.

The law protects Pennsylvania workers who apply for workers’ compensation from employer retaliation. Any form of retaliation is not only unfair, but it is also illegal. If you find yourself facing retaliation, there are several steps you can take to address the situation.

Recognize signs of retaliation

Retaliation can come in various forms. It might include things like unfair disciplinary actions, a sudden decrease in hours, an unexpected demotion or even termination. If these actions follow closely after you file a workers’ compensation claim, they may constitute retaliation.

Document everything

If you suspect retaliation, begin documenting everything immediately. Keep copies of all correspondence, make notes of conversations and keep track of the dates and details of each retaliatory action. This documentation can provide vital evidence if you need to defend your rights.

Report the retaliation

Report the retaliation to your company’s human resources department immediately after it happens. They are responsible for investigating your allegations and ensuring the company complies with the law. Remember to keep a record of your report and any correspondence related to it.

File a complaint with state authorities

If your employer does not take appropriate action, you have the right to file a complaint with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry. This department oversees workers’ compensation laws in the state and can investigate your complaint.

If you face employer retaliation after applying for workers’ compensation, remember you have rights. Retaliation is illegal, and you can take steps to ensure your employer treats you fairly. By recognizing the signs of retaliation and knowing what steps to take, you can navigate this difficult situation and defend your rights as a worker.