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Can An Employee Receiving Workers’ Comp Be Fired?

If you or someone you know is receiving workers’ compensation benefits, you may wonder if it’s possible to be fired or lose your job due to cause. Does having workers’ comp benefits protect you? And if you can be fired, what happens to the benefits?

The short answer: yes, you can be fired when you’re receiving workers’ compensation benefits. And your benefits will be affected.

This blog post is talking about being terminated for cause, also known as being fired. These are situations where your employer decides that you have not done the work needed, have broken a rule or regulation, or there is some other reason related to you. These are not situations where the company is reorganizing and is getting rid of positions, or is downsizing and eliminating roles, and you are laid off.

If you, as an injured worker, are fired, you will lose your wage loss benefits and won’t be able to get them back. Wage loss benefits are the workers’ compensation benefits that help you when you’re not making the same salary you were making before your injury, like temporary partial disability and temporary total disability benefits.

Even when fired, you will still be allowed your permanent partial disability benefits and your medical benefits. You won’t have help with income, but your medical bills related to the treatment of the injury will still be covered.

If you become totally disabled within a certain time period after you’re fired, you can get temporary total disability benefits. But once you’re released to light-duty work, your previous employer (or their workers’ compensation insurance company) can file with the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission and ask that you stop getting that benefit. The idea is that if you had not been fired, you would have light duty employment available at work that you could do, so they would not have to pay the benefits.

So, being fired affects your workers’ compensation benefits as well as your income and any other benefits you’ve been receiving from work (such as health insurance or a 401(k) plan).

Have you been injured on the job? Call HammondTownsend.

With over 45 years of combined experience handling Workers’ Compensation claims, our attorneys have recovered over $3 Billion for injured workers. As an exclusive injured workers law firm, our team fights for the compensation you deserve!

We are THE Virginia Workers’ Compensation Law Firm. Serving injured workers across the state of Virginia: Northern Virginia, Richmond, Roanoke, Lynchburg, Harrisonburg, Charlottesville, and Hampton Roads.

Contact us for a FREE case evaluation.

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