Workers’ compensation is a vital protection that provides financial and medical benefits to employees who suffer work-related injuries or illnesses. In Long Island, New York, workers’ compensation plays a crucial role in ensuring the well-being of workers and safeguarding their rights.
However, concerns often arise among employees about potential termination while they are on workers’ compensation. At The Law Offices of Joseph J. Perrini, III, I help work accident victims. I provide advice and guidance throughout the legal process. Here, you can learn more about your rights after a work injury and if it is legally possible for you to be terminated while on workers’ comp.
Understanding Workers’ Compensation in New York
Workers’ compensation is a no-fault insurance system designed to provide wage replacement and medical benefits to workers injured or who develop work-related illnesses. In New York, the Workers’ Compensation Board oversees the administration of this program, ensuring that injured employees receive timely and fair compensation for their losses.
Can I be Terminated While on Workers’ Compensation in Long Island?
The short answer is yes, but it’s more complicated than a simple “yes” or “no.” New York follows an “at-will” employment doctrine, which means that employers can terminate employees for any reason or no reason, as long as it doesn’t violate any laws or employment contracts. Being on workers’ compensation does not, by itself, protect an employee from termination.
However, certain legal protections are in place to prevent employers from wrongfully terminating employees while they are on workers’ compensation. It is essential to understand these protections and consult a workers’ compensation attorney in Long Island to safeguard your rights if you are in such a situation.
Protective Laws for Injured Workers in Long Island
Under the New York Workers’ Compensation Law, employers are prohibited from retaliating against employees who file workers’ compensation claims or exercise their rights under the law. This means an employer cannot fire or discriminate against an employee solely because they receive workers’ compensation benefits.
If a worker’s injury or illness qualifies as a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the employer has at least 15 employees, the employer is further restricted from terminating the employee due to the disability. The ADA mandates that employers provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities, which may include modified job duties or a temporary leave of absence.
New York Human Rights Law (NYHRL)
The NYHRL provides additional protection against discrimination based on disability, ensuring that employees with work-related injuries or illnesses are not subject to unfair treatment in the workplace.
Collective Bargaining Agreements
In some cases, employees protected by collective bargaining agreements may have additional job security measures, limiting the employer’s ability to terminate them while on workers’ compensation.
Role of a Long Island Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Navigating the complexities of workers’ compensation laws and the potential risks of termination can be challenging for an injured employee. Consulting a knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorney in Long Island can significantly protect your rights and ensure fair treatment.
Here are some ways a workers’ compensation lawyer can assist you:
- Expert Advice: A Long Island workers’ compensation lawyer has in-depth knowledge of New York’s workers’ compensation laws and can provide personalized legal advice tailored to your situation.
- Filing and Managing Your Claim: Your attorney can help you properly file your workers’ compensation claim and ensure all necessary documents are submitted accurately and on time.
- Investigation: A lawyer can independently investigate the circumstances surrounding your injury to gather evidence to support your claim.
- Negotiation and Settlement: If your employer or their insurance company offers a settlement, your attorney can negotiate to ensure you receive fair compensation for your losses.
- Defense Against Wrongful Termination: If you believe you were wrongfully terminated due to your workers’ compensation claim, your lawyer can help you build a case and defend your rights under relevant laws.
When you contact our law firm, you can feel confident we will work tirelessly to help you get the benefits you deserve and maintain your position at your place of employment. However, there are situations when this may not be possible. If this happens to you, our legal team will help you know what options you have.
Our Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Long Island Can Help with Your Claim
While it is possible to be terminated while on workers’ compensation in Long Island, New York, there are legal protections to prevent employers from retaliating against injured employees. Understanding your rights and consulting a Long Island workers’ compensation lawyer can be instrumental in protecting your job and ensuring you receive the benefits you deserve during this challenging time.
If you face termination while on workers’ compensation, don’t hesitate to seek legal counsel to safeguard your rights and future. Contact our office at (516) 908-8659 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your claim.