Unfortunately, not all employers value their employees. When an employee is injured, many employers and supervisors aren’t supportive and may harass or discriminate against the worker. However, Washington State Law prohibits retaliating against an employee who has filed a Workers’ Compensation claim, and the victim may recover damages for such conduct.
Furthermore, harassment of an injured or disabled worker may constitute a form of employment discrimination and a claim may be brought under Federal Law, such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, (ADEA), or the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, (ADA).
Lehmbecker Law can help with many harassing
situations that injured workers often face:
1. Employer mistreatment because you physically cannot perform your job: If you have been injured at work and your doctor has provided you with job restrictions, your employer must honor those restrictions. They cannot require you to do more than you are physically able to do. We can help an injured client navigate this situation.
2. Responding to bogus light-duty job offers: Employers often try to get around the law by offering the injured worker a so-called “light-duty” job. An employer does this because if the employee fails to take the job, their time-loss and other benefits may be terminated. However, these light-duty jobs are often phony. The physical requirements are often undefined so it is impossible to tell if it fits within a worker’s current physical limitations. Sometimes the work is deliberately demeaning, and the employer is hoping the worker will refuse the job. Lehmbecker Law can help you defeat these false and unfair job offers and make sure that you continue to receive the benefits you are entitled to.
Many other situations not directly associated with a work injury can also give rise to an employment discrimination or harassment claim. Lehmbecker Law can help you identify whether conduct is unlawful, and can either assist you, or in certain cases, will refer you to an employment law specialist.
1. Taking tangible adverse action against a worker for unlawful reasons (e.g., hiring, firing, promotions, compensation, work assignments, etc.)
2. Offensive conduct by a victim’s supervisor, a supervisor in another area, an agent of the employer, a co-worker, or a non-employee that is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
3. Situations with an employer in which enduring offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment.
It’s important to know that regardless of what is going on at work, injured workers should not quit their job rashly, as doing so can immediately render them ineligible for L&I benefits. Always seek legal guidance first to make sure that your rights are fully protected.