Consider a situation where an employee is recovering from a work-related injury and enjoying his compensated leave when suddenly he receives notice of laying off. The news can be devastating since workers will always presume that they have a secured job after their recovery.
However, such a rule against laying off is not absolute. There is a thin line between illegal and legal termination. To find out whether the employer is justified, there needs to be a determination of the basis behind such termination.
Determine the Nature of the Termination
An employee has a legal ground to nullify the termination when it is based solely on the compensated leave. The Workers Compensation Benefit is provided by law to protect and indemnify an employee who acquired not only permanent but also temporary injuries or illness because of his work. It would then be counterproductive if the law will allow a worker to be laid off because of it.
This form of employer retaliation is strictly prohibited by the government, which can render the company liable for further indemnification or reinstatement of the laid-off worker.
On the other hand, a dismissal is well justified if it is for reasons other than the use of the workers compensation benefit. Under the laws of Montana, termination must be justified for a good cause. In other words, it is legal for as long as the reason behind it is not discriminatory such as poor performance and employee misconduct.
For this reason, the employer must clearly show that the reason behind the termination is based on legal grounds, and it must have existed at least before the workers compensation was filed.
In other situations, even when the termination was unclear or questionable as to its reasons, the law will presume it as a retaliation against the employee and deem it illegal. That is why there must be a clear indication that the compensated leave is not one of the reasons for the dismissal.
Laws are created equal, which is why there are protective measures afforded to both employers and employees. While generally, a dismissal during a compensated leave is illegal, it also has certain exceptions, such as termination for a good cause.
Employment is not easy to come by nowadays, which is why you should find means and establish measures to protect such. If you are in a similar situation and you think the termination was wholly illegal, then you can claim for additional benefits and also, your reinstatement back to employment.
Find the Right Workers Compensation Lawyer
To protect your employment-interest, finding the best workers compensation lawyer is crucial. That is why it is vital to know the best law firms around Montana.
Glacier Law Firm is one of the best law firms that also specialized in workers compensation cases. The firm has helped hundreds of employees get the best results out of their claims. If you are interested in getting a case evaluation, contact them by calling (406) 298-6725 or visit the office at 20 Four Mile Drive, Ste #4, Kalispell, Montana.