William called with a painful situation: he was injured on the job. He fell at work and hurt his back, and his employer fired him once the doctor said he would need surgery. William had no money coming in and now he couldn’t work at all. He wanted answers right away.
If you are injured at work and terminated from your job, you probably want to know whether your employer did something wrong. You probably need to consult a lawyer to help figure out your rights. Because there is no one-size-fits-all answer, you will be asked a lot of questions, such as:
- Was your workers’ compensation claim accepted or denied?
- Were you out of work at the time you were terminated?
- Were you able to do your job?
- Did you have a union contract at your place of employment?
- Were other people fired at the same time?
- Were you accused of doing something wrong?
- Do you believe that you were fired because of your workers’ comp case?
Your former employer may not have violated any of your rights when you were fired. You may – or may not – be entitled to workers’ compensation payments for your time out of work. You could have a retaliation claim because you were treated wrongfully, or you could have the ability to file for unemployment benefits.
Many North Carolina workers worry that if they report a work injury, they will be deported, stalked, arrested, harassed, or worse. In theory, North Carolina law protects injured workers – including undocumented workers – from criminal action or retaliation after they file a work injury claim. Such protections are important to reassure workers that they can report a work injury without fear for their own safety and security. Read more about this in our blog post: Don’t be afraid to file a Work Injury claim in North Carolina