Every employee in the state of Kentucky—with very few exceptions—is eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits after suffering an on-the-job injury or work-related illness. But what happens if you are laid off or fired? Are you still able to file a workers’ compensation claim? And what will happen if you were already collecting workers’ compensation benefits when you were let go?
The answers to these questions, unfortunately, are not so simple. A lot will depend on the specifics of your situation, such as the reason you were laid off and whether or not you are the victim of wrongful termination. Keep reading to learn more about your rights and eligibility for workers’ compensation after being laid off in Kentucky, or contact the Justice Law Office directly to request a free consultation with one of our experienced Louisville workers’ compensation lawyers.
Your Employer Cannot Fire You Because You Filed for Workers’ Compensation
First and foremost, it’s important to understand whether or not you are the victim of wrongful termination. In Kentucky, your employer is not allowed to fire you because you filed for workers’ compensation. This is known as retaliation, and it is prohibited under state employment and labor laws.
If you believe you were fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim, it’s important that you reach out to an experienced attorney right away. You should be able to take legal action against the employer who wrongfully terminated you and continue pursuing workers’ compensation benefits, but doing so can be incredibly complex and difficult without the help of a knowledgeable attorney.
If you suspect that your employer fired you in retaliation for seeking workers’ compensation benefits, contact the Justice Law Office at your earliest convenience to discuss your rights and options with one of our Louisville workers’ compensation lawyers.
What If I Was Fired or Let Go While Already Receiving Workers’ Comp Benefits?
If your employer fired you or let you go while you were already receiving workers’ compensation benefits, the question of whether or not you will be able to continue receiving benefits will most likely depend on the reason you were fired or let go.
It is important to note that an employee can be fired or let go while they happen to be collecting workers’ compensation benefits; the only time this constitutes wrongful termination is when the employee is let go or fired for unlawful reasons, such as in retaliation for seeking workers’ compensation, due to discriminatory reasons, or in violation of the employee’s civil rights.
If, at the time you were fired or let go, you were still being treated by your doctor and could not work or could only conduct modified work (“light duty”), you should still be able to continue receiving workers’ compensation benefits. Just because you were let go, this does not negate the fact that you were injured at work or as a result of your work-related duties. As such, your injuries are still covered by workers’ compensation according to Kentucky state law.
If, however, you were fired or let go as a result of your own misconduct or due to disciplinary reasons, you will not be able to continue receiving benefits. For example, if you return to work on light duty and your employer accuses you of unlawful conduct while at work, your workers’ compensation benefits will not continue after you are fired.
What to Do If You Need Help Filing for or Collecting Your Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Whether you were fired after being injured at work but before filing a workers’ compensation claim or after you had already filed your claim or started receiving benefits, it is a good idea to work with a competent legal professional who can ensure that your rights are protected. If you have any questions about your claim or your benefits, we encourage you to reach out to our Louisville workers’ compensation lawyers at the Justice Law Office to find out how we can help. We are here to provide the answers, support, and legal guidance you need, as well as the dedicated and aggressive advocacy you deserve.
Contact us online or call (502) 822-2230 today for a free, confidential consultation.