Yes. Depending on the specifics of your case you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits even after being fired.
Generally, you’re entitled to workers’ compensation benefits when you get injured on the job. The compensation helps you meet any medical expenses, lost wages, and pain or suffering you may experience due to the injury.
However, what happens if you’re fired before you can file a workers comp claim? Can you still recover your compensation? Here’s what you need to know about receiving workers’ compensation post-termination.
While being fired after a workplace injury does not hinder you from making a workers’ compensation claim, your employer may use the post-termination defense to deny your benefits.
The post-termination defense protects employers from workers who may file false work injury claims after being fired. Unfortunately, your employer may use this defense to argue that you are no longer employed and, therefore, not liable for workers’ comp benefits. However, your claim may be successful if you can prove the following:
Your Employer Was Aware of Your Injury Before the Layoff
It would help if you informed your employer of your workplace injuries immediately. While you can notify them by word of mouth, making the report in writing is advisable. A written notification serves as irrefutable proof of notification and can be used to verify that your employer was aware of your injuries before they laid you off. This proof can then be used to support your workplace injury claim and help you receive the compensation you deserve.
You Have Medical Records Dated Before Termination
If you got injured before you were terminated, notified your employer, and sought medical care, then you may be entitled to full compensation. Your medical records may be used as evidence of injury.
You Suffered a Cumulative Trauma
Your work might have caused a cumulative trauma injury, which you were unaware of until after being fired. In such a scenario, you may still be eligible for compensation.
You Suffered an Injury While on a Business Trip
Suppose you are on a business trip and then learned that your contract had been terminated. While this might be disheartening, any injury you may suffer while returning home may entitle you to compensation.
Your Injury Happened Post-Notification but Before You Left the Work Premises
If your employer terminates your contract, you may be entitled to compensation if you slip and fall before your shift ends or while leaving the premises.
We’re Here to Help!
Filing a successful work injury claim after termination can be particularly challenging if you have been fired. Your employer and their insurance company may join forces to discredit your claim. We highly recommend speaking with an experienced Missouri workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal rights and ensure they are protected.
At the Law Office of James M. Hoffmann, we have over 25 years of experience protecting the rights of injured Missouri workers and know every trick the insurance company may employ to deny your claim. Give us a call 24/7 to schedule a free consultation.
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