Can an Employer Fire an Employee Who is Injured on the Job?

In Georgia, an employer may fire an employee who is injured on the job without giving any other reason. In fact, they may also fire an employee for making a workers’ compensation claim. However, such a dismissal will have certain consequences that may be in the injured worker’s favor.

If a worker is fired because of an injury suffered at work, he or she may be able to receive temporary total disability benefits under Georgia workers’ compensation law without having to actively look for other work. In order to receive these benefits, however, the worker must prove they were actual fired because of their injury and not for some other reason. Employers will not hesitate to make up a reason for a firing, so proving that your dismissal came about as a result of your injury may be difficult to prove. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can be an invaluable asset in this situation.

Sometimes an employer’s refusal to make accommodations for an injured worker can be proof that the worker was effectively dismissed as a result of injuries sustained on the job. The March 2015 case of Burns v. State of Georgia Department of Administrative Services illustrates this possibility. In this case, the employer refused to switch the injured worker to different duties to accommodate her injury, and later fired her. Her claim for disability benefits was disputed by her former employer, who claimed to have fired her for reasons unrelated to her injury. The court ultimately held that Ms. Burns was at least partially fired due to her injury, and was therefore not required to search for other work while receiving disability benefits

A workplace injury can involve a complex array of legal options. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help guide you through this tricky process. The attorneys of Murphy & Garner, LLC, have over 32 years of experience serving clients in western Georgia and the surrounding area. We will fight for your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. Call us today for a free consultation at 866-942-0552 or 678-563-1584.

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